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Shock as popular musician is found dead

By STELLA CHERONO and GEOFFREY RONO

Mystery surrounds the death of renowned musician Diana Chemutai Musila, 30, popularly known as Chelele, whose body was found on Saturday morning at her house in Kapwen, Bomet County.

The singer’s body had several stab wounds and was found on the verandah, according to Bomet County Police Commander Leah Kithei.

Chelele was hugely popular for her Kalenjin language secular songs but had in recent years had a troubled life.

The body was found by her younger sister, Beatrice, who told the police that she went to check on the musician after the family got concerned that her phone was not going through for two days.

Ms Kithei said investigations into the death of the singer were underway, but police suspect that she may have been murdered elsewhere and her body dumped at her home.

“The gate and the door to the house were open and had no signs of a break-in; we have gathered some details of the crime scene which we hope will help us in the investigations,” the police commander said.

MURDER CHARGES

Bomet residents said the singer was last seen in the town on Monday where she owns a music store, a bar and a restaurant.

The body was taken to the Longisa County Referral Hospital Mortuary.

Some of the villagers interviewed, and who declined to be named, said Chelele had long deserted the Kapkwen house and relocated to Kaitui in Kericho County where she was also operating a bar.

In 2012, Chelele hit the headlines when her husband, Eric Makau, an Administration Police officer, was arrested and charged with the murder of Eldoret surveyor Eliud Yego in an alleged love triangle.

Mr Makau, who had twins with the singer, was accused of shooting dead Mr Yego for allegedly having an affair with the musician.

Mr Makau was arrested by officers from the Flying Squad at his home in Kibwezi, two days after the murder of Mr Yego. At his compound was the vehicle belonging to Mr Yego.

In a television interview he gave while handcuffed, Mr Makau claimed he had found his wife with Mr Yego in Bureti, after which he identified himself as a police officer with the intention to arrest him.

LOVE TRIANGLE

“He (Mr Yego) complied and I told him that I would take him to the police station. Yego, my wife and I entered his car and he drove towards town but he stopped after some distance, unlocked the car’s doors and tried jumping out,” he alleged during the interview, describing the moment before he shot dead his supposed love rival.

Mr Makau and his wife were arrested and detained at the Litein police station in Bomet as the investigation into the death continued. They were eventually charged with the murder of the surveyor. The case is pending in court.

On October 3, last year, the  musician was admitted to the Nakuru General Hospital after a suicide attempt.

She was found unconscious in a hotel in Nakuru, moments after she had called her friends and informed them of her intentions. A day before the attempted suicide, she had performed at a roadshow in Eldoret which attracted a huge crowd.

She had a month earlier filed for divorce at Bomet Law Courts but later withdrew the petition. Her family said that her children are currently under the custody of her husband who is out on bond after appearing in court to face the murder charges.

The singer had recorded dozens of songs in her career, including those popular with her fans like Maiywek (alcohol), Igaigayan (treat me well), Meus Kondo (don’t mistreat your wife), Mapenzi, Binti Osama and Mashabik (fans).