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Did this man pocket Sh2.8m meant for baby’s surgery?

A man who is accused of conning a family Sh2.8 million collected from well-wishers’ to facilitate the treatment of a one and half year old child has been arrested.

The man Francis Wanjau, the Founder of Hope Foundation, was picked up by a police crack squad Thursday afternoon at the ABC Place in Nairobi and taken to Muthangari police station.

Mr Wanjau initiated a funds drive on social media to raise the money by posing with Fidelis Muthoni who is suffering from a life-threatening frontal bone defect known as Frontal Encephalocele.

The baby had been booked for surgery in Canada but the family lacked funds.

Her family said a team of doctors from Canada had offered to treat her for free if they paid for her flight and six-month stay.

The Founder of Hope Foundation Joseph Wanjau with baby Fidelis Muthoni.
The Founder of Hope Foundation Francis Wanjau with baby Fidelis Muthoni.

Ms Muthoni’s family said Mr Wanjau, a close relative, volunteered to conduct the funds drive, but the money was withdrawn without their knowledge and the ailing baby was never treated.

“The paybill account number transcripts that we got from Safaricom indicated that Sh2.8 million had been deposited into the account and later withdrawn,” said Muthoni’s father Kenneth Kinuthia.



Kinuthia added that he had also given Mr Wanjau Sh155,000 from a church fundraiser to deposit into the medical funds account.

The Director of Digital Communication at the Office of The President, Dennis Itumbi who was largely involved in the funds drive campaign on Thursday said the incident shows humanity had deserted the human race.

“This case is a clear indication that cybercrime has gone a notch higher and some people no longer have a sense of humanity,” he said.

“There are many foundations conning people online and we were tirelessly working to crackdown on them. Kenyans be warned.”