Human Body Parts Don't Create Wealth
This week's kidnapping and eventual murder of a six-year-old Sudanese boy,
Emmanuel Agwar Adar, in Nairobi was gory as it can be. But they rubbed it on
cutting off his tongue.
Emmanuel's murder comes barely a month after the city's taxi drivers took to the
streets to protest the murder of their six colleagues in mysterious
The taxi men claimed all the victims had their private parts chopped off before
being dumped in the outskirts of the city.
Cases similar to that of the Kenyan drivers, where people disappear
mysteriously, only for their bodies to be discovered several days later minus
various body parts are so many in the continent today that they are treated as
routine crimes in some countries.(Italics added by FVDK). Follow reports from
South Africa, Mozambique, Nigeria, Malawi, Zambia, Tanzania, Burundi,
17 September 2009
Ritual Killings Worry Taxi Drivers
Four Nairobi taxi drivers have been killed and their mutilated bodies dumped on
the roadside in the past few days. And on Tuesday city taxi drivers staged a
protest against the macabre killings, saying that 13 of their colleagues have
been murdered in similar style in the past fortnight.
According to the taxi operators, their colleagues were each approached by two
customers at different intervals in the wee hours of Monday morning. They
disappeared until their mutilated bodies were found dumped in different parts of
The taxi drivers said the bodies had missing parts and organs such as the brain,
tongues and skulls. All the vehicles have, however, been recovered with nothing
having been stolen.
Mr Peter Karanja, aged 28 and a father of one, picked up two passengers in
Woodley area on the morning on August 31. His body was later found dumped at
Adams Arcade near the Winners Chapel.
Another victim, Mr George Mburu Kiarie, in his late 40s, is said to have picked
up two passengers on Standard Street next to the Stanley Hotel on August 31 at
3am. He too never returned from the assignment, and his body was found near
Also murdered was Mr Charles Mugo, who was approached by two men near the 680
Hotel around 5am on Monday. His colleagues said the two passengers said they
wanted to go to Strathmore School. That was the area where Mr Mugo's was found
near the Administration Police camp.
An earlier case included that of Mr James Tanu Githuku, 60, who was buried last
Saturday. He was working on the night of August 23 and his body was found the
following morning at Kibera. Mr Githuku left behind two wives Josline Wangui and
Eunice Wambui and 10 children. He was also survived by a number of grandchildren
and great grandchildren.
During Tuesday's demonstration, the drivers' national chairman Mr Peter Mburu
appealed to the government to investigate the killings. "Our drivers are now
afraid of working at night," Mr Mburu said.
September 1, 2009
Kenya says not to disarm pastoral communities
The Kenyan government said on Tuesday it is not ready to disarm the pastoral
communities on the border with Sudan, Ethiopia and Uganda.
Labor Minister John Munyes who originates from Turkana (North) said Kenya would
carry out disarmament only if Sudan and Ethiopia do so.
"How do you expect us to disarm our people when our neighbors, the Merrile from
Ethiopia struck in a broad-day to execute a ritual killing? We require a
regional approach to remove guns from the affected communities which will be
compelled with intensive community policing," Munyes noted.
August 11, 2009
Two killed, dozens wounded at ritual killing at Kenya-Ethiopian border
Ethiopian warriors killed two Kenyans and wounded 14 others on Wednesday night
in a ritual killing barely a fortnight when deadly clashes between Merrile and
Turkana tribesmen killed dozens others along the common frontier.
Survivors and officials said on Thursday that hundreds of Merrile youths aged
between 13 and 18 are queued for a circumcision ritual between this month and
August and cultural dictates that they exhibit braveness by killing an enemy
before being circumcised.
Once they kill, they chop off private parts and other organs oftheir victims,
including ears, noses and toes, which they carry away and present as a sign of
And on Wednesday night, Merrile initiates from Namurupus area, Southern Zone
travelled over 40 km inside Kenya and indiscriminately fired at a dancing crowd
during Wednesday night attack at Kokuro village.
June 18, 2009
- Regional parliament decries albino killings
The East African Legislative Assembly (Eala) has decried the killing
of albinos in the region and urged "tougher measures" to stop the
ritual murders and protect albinos. (...) At the ongoing meeting of
the regional parliament in Bujumbura, Burundi, MPs from the five EAC
member states called for regional cooperation to protect albinos
victimised by superstitious fortune seekers.
The killings are rampant in some parts of Burundi, Kenya and
The legislators said while "considerable progress" had been made on
human rights issues in the EA region, the current killings and
hostility portrayed towards the albino community showed there was
still a long way to go in achieving the full respect for human
May 30, 2009
- Woman's ordeal of ritual gone awry - a murder attempt
If everything had gone according to her kidnapper’s plan, Ms Esther
Nayale, 38, would have been sacrificed in a ritual killing last
Nayale, who was drugged and kidnapped in Nairobi while on her way to
Mombasa, could have met her death in Webuye, in western Kenya,
hundreds of kilometres away from her Maralal home, Samburu District.
At Matungu Hospital in Mumias, where she is undergoing treatment for
serious burns on the back, Nayale said last week’s events are still
unfolding in her mind like a nightmare.
May 27, 2009
- Police commissioner Hussein Ali blames rights crusaders for
Kenya police commissioner Hussein Ali is in a foul mood. And his
major irritants include Prof Philip Alston who came to town early
this year, and officials of the Kenya National Commission on Human
After the killing of dozens of people by suspected Mungiki members
in Central Province this week, Maj-Gen Ali accuses the two of
sanitising and emboldening criminal gangs. (...) “One is tempted to
question the complicity in the commission’s persistent support for a
criminal group. Mungiki should not be protected,” he said.
While releasing his report in February, Prof Alston, the UN Special
Rapporteur on unlawful executions, blamed the Kenyan police for
extra-judicial killings. “Killings by police in Kenya are systematic,
widespread and carefully planned,” he said.
For police commissioner Ali, statements by rights agency, and
especially that of the UN official, had given members of the
outlawed sect licence to continue their activities with abandon. The
gang is notorious for extortion, oathing and ritual slaughter of its
For his part, Mr Njuguna Gitau, the spokesman of the National Youth
Alliance, seen as the political wing of Mungiki, said that 14 of the
29 people killed in Central Kenya this week were “our members.”
April 24, 2009
- Kenyans Riot After Finding Mutilated Victims of Ritual
At least five bodies were found hacked up in a Nairobi
shantytown over the weekend, the latest victims of a series of
grisly ritual murders that have rocked Kenya.
The mutilated corpses all had similar cuts on their backs, and at
least one victim was missing both his hands. Two women had their
breasts cut off and the remaining victims, all male, had their
Riots broke out in the notoriously lawless Mukuru kwa Njenga
neighborhood Saturday morning, soon after the bodies were discovered.
Rumors swirled that a suspect, said to be in police custody, had
been spotted licking blood from one of the corpses. Rioters demanded
the police turn the suspect over to them so that they could mete out
In the last year alone, a quasi-religious sect of Kikuyu tribesmen
(the Mungiki sect) has beheaded dozens of people in ritual murders
The manner of death in the weekend's killings does not match the
Mungiki's preferred methods, however.
In a scarring incident last August, a man in Naivasha, a town near
the capital of Nairobi, admitted to raping two women repeatedly and
draining one of so much blood — which he said he drank — that she
died. A Pentecostal bishop was arrested after the man told police he
had supplied the clergyman with vials of blood. The bishop was
subsequently exonerated — though not before his church was almost
razed by a mob.
Ritual killings have had a long history in Kenya. Government
employees themselves were among those frequently accused of
mutilation and vampirism during the colonial era, says Luise White,
author of Speaking with Vampires, a history of the phenomenon in
January 16, 2009
- Albinos protest against ritual killing of child
Kenyans with albinism want the government to launch a manhunt for
people who killed a seven-year-old albino.
They expressed fear that the ritual killing was an indicator that
the menace that started in Tanzania was spreading into the country.
They said Greentone Njoroge, the albino killed in Namanga during
Christmas was attacked as he was out playing with other children.
Yesterday, The Standard’s CCI magazine exclusively reported how
witches were buying albino body parts to help their clients acquire
December 31, 2008
- Held and freed, Bishop says he is clean
September 3, 2008
Police in Naivasha have arrested a bishop in
connection with the killing of a woman and the drinking of human
blood in a bizarre ritual.
August 22, 2008
- NAIROBI - Kenyan police on Tuesday recovered the remains of a
mutilated albino woman with missing organs, raising fears of a
possible ritual killing, police said. The tongue, breasts, eyes and
genitals had been chopped off from the body of the woman recovered
in western Kenya's Borabu district, said area police commander
Mwaura Njoroge. "We have launched investigations into this issue
that is very rare in this area," he said.
May 28, 2008
- Nairobi - Kenyan police discovered on Monday the torso of a
child they suspect was the victim of a ritual killing. Villagers
found the headless and limbless six-year-old boy, who went missing
last week, in a pit in the Igembe district of eastern Kenya, local
police commander Hebson Kadege said. Ritual killing is still common
in many African tribes that believe in witchcraft. Igembe lies in
the heart of a region well known for the production of mild narcotic
leaves called khat.
May 13, 2008
- Ritual murder, inspired by traditional religious beliefs, is on
the rise in Africa. You can read about it in any of the national
papers, from Zimbabwe to Senegal - and now Kenya.
On July 13, 2007, I was sitting in a hotel lobby in Nairobi, reading
a disturbing article in a Kenyan newspaper. The day before, a
two-year-old boy had been killed in the Korogocho slums of Nairobi.
He had been beheaded and his limbs hacked off. The boy's body had
been identified by his shocked and grieving father, who had reported
him missing a few days earlier. The manner, style and place of his
murder was no accident. Police, sociologists and other experts
immediately identified it as an act of violence (possibly a ritual
murder) perpetrated by the Mungiki.
In the nine months leading up to the recent spasm of
election-related violence, it is estimated that the Mungiki were
responsible for the murder of more than 43 people, 13 of whom had
their heads cut off, mostly in the Kikuyu tribal heartlands of
central Kenya, and in the slums of Nairobi.
February 5, 2008
- He was only two years old,
innocent and bubbling with life. But when they found him on
Wednesday after missing since Monday, his body lay lifeless by a
riverbank, hacked and carved out in a chilling incident the police
say was a ritual killing by Mungiki members. The head and the torso
were found a few metres apart - but with vital body parts missing.
The head had been skinned, his private parts, chest and part of the
hands were missing.
July 12, 2007
A human rights organisation that has been giving free legal services
to suspected Mungiki adherents has withdrawn its services. The
organisation withdrew the legal services citing the ghastly
beheading and skinning of a two-year-old boy in what is suspected to
be ritual killing.
Those behind a recent spate of killings in Kenya do not have "a
right to live," President Mwai Kibaki said on Friday in his
strongest comments yet on an issue that has raised fears the
violence will disrupt upcoming elections. Kibaki did not name the
Mungiki sect, the outlawed group believed behind at least 12
killings in the past three months. The bodies of six of the victims
were found mutilated a week ago on the outskirts of the capital.
June 1, 2007
It was a grisly scene; human body parts
next to a blackened pot, raw blood sprinkled on a dusty floor
and a skinned carcass of a goat. The items, found inside a house
where 12 Mungiki suspects were shot dead in Murang'a on Sunday,
offer spine-chilling insights into oathing ceremonies conducted
by the killer gang.
July 4, 2007
- More than 300 people have been
arrested in Murang'a as the crackdown against Mungiki was
intensified at the weekend. The arrests came a day after a matatu
driver and conductor were beheaded and their vehicle burnt by a gang
linked to the outlawed sect. Meanwhile, security officers for two
MPs have also been withdrawn as part of the ongoing investigations.
Those affected are Wundanyi MP Mwandawiro Mghanga and Juja MP
June 4, 2007
- The recent beheadings of innocent citizens by the dreaded
Mungiki sect in Kenya have again brought to the fore weaknesses in
Kenya’s law enforcement agencies. Mungiki is an ethnic/faith based
vigilante organisation that has metamorphosed into a terror group.
In one week, six people in separate residential areas in different
districts in the Central Province were beheaded in what appears to
have been a coordinated onslaught by the perpetrators. In one
district, the murders went beyond beheadings: the victims were
dismembered and the body parts scattered in different places. In one
area, three legs from different corpses were left together by the
roadside and the rest of the bodies are yet to be found. In another
district, the head of one victim was spiked onto the roof of a
neighbour’s chicken pen and another was placed on a telephone pole.
The most gruesome and telling find was when the police stumbled upon
Mungiki suspects in possession of male reproductive organs and other
paraphernalia associated with the sect in Maragua. More male organs
were found later in a separate raid. Suspicions were that a ritual
had been taking place.
May 29, 2007
- This is the head, and there are two cuts on the neck," Lucia
Wangari says, using dry twigs to demonstrate the gory find. "A stick
is pushed through to support the head, and further hoisted on the
pole. When I saw it, the head stood this way?" Wangari explains,
mouth ajar and hands akimbo.
May 23, 2007
- Police in Maragua stumbled on
Mungiki suspects with parts of male reproductive organs. Local
Officer Commanding Police Division, Mr Stanley Lamai, said the scene
was also littered with blood and other paraphernalia associated with
the sect. More organs were found in a house nearby during the
Tuesday night raid in Githemba village.
May 7, 2007
- Kenya's government says it has
evidence devil worshippers are sacrificing humans, drinking their
blood and raping children and urges the public to shun such satanic
September 24, 1994
Only the EA federation can save Kenya from tribalism
Right now, an election year has brought the worst in us as Kenyans. The
most educated and the most influential elite have gone ethnic in the
most bizarre manner! Yesterday’s voices of reason have become today’s
most vocal parochial individuals. Lawyers, doctors, teachers and priests
are preaching tribalism as loudly as the lowly cane-cutter or coffee
labourer in Nyanza and Central provinces!
The secretive Mungiki sect: banned since 2002 but
still very powerful. Mungiki sect members have engaged in ritual murders
and the outlawed sect is suspected to have close connections with
powerful politicians who are accused of using the murderous sect for
A Profile of Kenya's secretive Mungiki sect
Secret Mungiki Profile
Kenya government accused of using murderous sect and other news items on
Superstition in Kenya and other countries:
'Witches' Set Ablaze in 21st Century Kenya