Police in Igembe South, Meru County are pursuing a suspect who chopped off both arms of his brother-in-law for blocking him from a land inheritance entitlement from the marriage with the victim’s sister.
The victim, 22-year-old Earnest Kobia is recuperating at Kenyatta National Hospital.
According to the victim’s father Charles Kiraithe, the suspect Jothum Mwenda attacked his paternal son Kobia for opposing Mwenda’s marriage to her daughter.
From the marriage, Mwenda was entitled to a piece of land; an inheritance which Kobia was opposed to.
Kiraithe said his paternal son and his son-in-law had irreconcilable differences over the marriage of her daughter, with Kobia claiming Mwenda was not good enough to marry his sister.
“They have been having quarrels for along time threatening each other after my young boy expressed the discontent of the suspect Jothum Mwenda to marry his sister and inheriting the piece of land I gave them(sic),” Kiraithe told People Daily.
Kiraithe also said the suspect had been threatening his son but he(Kiraithe) did not take the threats seriously because Mwenda always looked calm.
“I did not take his threats so serious because he was such a humble man but I remember him telling my son that if he continues standing between their marriage he will eliminate him,” he added.
Since 2015, Mwenda and his suitor (Kobia’s sister) had been living at the girl’s home which made the girl’s father (Kiraithe) allocate them a piece of land.
“Kobia did not like it when I gave Mwenda and his wife a piece of land because he always said my son-in-law was not good enough to marry his sister and now I agree seeing what the man I trusted so much has done to my son and leaving him handicapped forever,” the victim’s father.
The victim’s uncle James Gikundi further claimed that the assailant escaped still armed with the panga he had used. He said the suspect first tied the victim’s hands with a rope before committing the heinous act.
“He was bleeding profusely and we rushed him to Meru Teaching and Referal Hospital but he was referred to Kenyatta National Hospital. As the family, we are calling for justice, and police to urgently carry out investigations and arrest the culprit,” added Gikundi.
Confirming the incident, Igembe South police boss Henry Onyango said they are following up on the matter and waiting for the victim to get out of the hospital and record a statement to help the police arrest Mwenda.
He however appealed to the members of the public to solve domestic issues amicably instead of taking law into their hands.
“Land tussle still remains a thorn in the flesh in Igembe. People kill one another every now and then over land-related issues. We are calling on elders to be on the lookout and intervene on such matters,” said the police boss.