A 17 year-old student, Cynthia Makokha did not know she wouldn’t make to spend her highly anticipated holiday with her family. She traveled from Nairobi to Mumias for the holiday but she met her untimely death when she was abducted, killed and her body thrown into a river.
The high school student went missing on October 4 which made her family in Kakamega to worry about her whereabouts.
The worry turned into agony days later when the girl’s body was found dumped in River Lusumu, few kilometers away from Mumias town.
The form four candidate was headed to her home in Shianda when she was abducted under unclear circumstances.
Cynthia lived with her aunt in Nairobi and she left the aunt’s house on October 4. She promised she would be back after four days to prepare for re-opening of schools on October 11.
She boarded Eldoret Express bus at 6 am and headed to Western where she was to alight at Shianda town, in Mumias East sub-county.
Her mother said that she talked with her daughter the previous day and she seemed eager to arrive home. She said she advised her daughter to carry her books so that she would continue with her studies at home.
As Cynthia was on the bus, she updated her mother and uncles in Mumias and her aunt in Nairobi on her journey.
However, after reaching Kapsabet in the afternoon, all communication stopped. The family said the girl was no longer picking calls. They assumed that she might have fallen asleep.
Around 8 pm after several attempts to reach her, she finally picked their calls and informed her worried family that she was in Butere, about 13 kilometers way from Mumias town.
Her uncle, Victor Wanga, worried about her, he rushed to Butere and he could not find her, she was no longer picking calls.
The uncle said while searching for her, her aunt in Nairobi got a message sent from her phone that she was safe.”I returned home around 11 pm hoping that she would join us the following morning,” said the uncle.
On October 5, hours after her disappearance, friends noticed that Cynthia’s Facebook page was updated with a photo of an unknown man.
Her family quickly reported her disappearance and the strange man’s photo to police in Mumias.
They discovered that the man was called Johnny and hailed from Maraba, a village in Mumias East.
Relatives and the police began a search for Johnny and when they arrived in his house, they found Cynthia’s bag and phone.
However, as the family were eager to hear from the man about Cynthia’s whereabouts, he kept silent and offered no information.
“The man denied knowing my daughter even after he was arrested. This left us confused because he had her phone and bag containing her clothes and books,” said the mother.
Six days later, while the police made frantic efforts to find Cynthia, her body was discovered floating in River Lusumu 200 meters from the home of the suspect.
Her heartbroken mother said the death of her daughter who is the first born out of five children shattered the family’s hope of a brighter future. The family is now crying for justice for Cynthia.
Mumias West sub-county police commander, Mr. Stephen Muoni confirmed that a suspect was in their custody and he will help in providing more information in the probe of Cynthia’s death.
Her body was moved to Kakamega County Referral Hospital mortuary awaiting postmortem.