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Two burials for family of Moi Girls fire victim

An elderly man has died after learning that his granddaughter was among the nine victims of Moi Girls School, Nairobi arson attack.

In the tragic turn of events, Patrick Nyangweso Mogusu, 85, and her granddaughter, Whitney Kerubo, 14, will both be buried on Friday at their home in Nyamburuga village, Nyamira County.

When the Nation visited on Wednesday, young Kerubo’s grave was complete and his grandfather’s was almost done.

Their bodies will be brought into the homestead on Thursday before being interred on Friday in a joint ceremony.

Kepha Mutanya Nyamwara, a cousin of the late Kerubo and grandson of Nyangweso, said they are overwhelmed by grief having lost two of their kin.

“We are at great loss. This is double tragedy,” said Mr Mutanya.

ARSON ATTACK

He said his grandfather started complaining of body aches on Sunday, September 3, 2017 after learning that his granddaughter, who was first to be named after his wife, had died.

“He saw people wailing in our homestead and although we tried to hide it from him that his granddaughter was no more, he knew all was not well,” he said.

Mr Mutanya said they later took him to Christane-Marie hospital in Kisii town for treatment after he stopped talking and refused to eat anything.

Villagers of Nyamburuga village, Nyamira County digging the graves of Whitney Kerubo and her grandfather Mzee Patrick Nyangweso. PHOTO | RUTH MBULA
Villagers of Nyamburuga village, Nyamira County digging the graves of Whitney Kerubo and her grandfather Mzee Patrick Nyangweso. PHOTO | RUTH MBULA

He was admitted in the private hospital till Thursday when he died.

Family members said Kerubo was a hardworking girl and had a bright future.

Others who perished in the incident that police described as an arson attack include Esther Neema, Nancy Wamuthuri Thuku, Hanna Jeyso Timado, Hawa Aziz, Mary Njengo Mokaya, Alakiir Malong, Natalie Asiko and Marcia Okello.

PAINFUL LOSS

The nine, who were sleeping in the ill-fated Kabarnet dormitory that housed all the school’s 338 Form One students, were burnt beyond recognition.

Kerubo’s kin say they are traumatised especially because it was difficult to identify her even through DNA.

Her uncle Ezekiel Bosire Oweno said it is painful that they will have to put two of their loved ones in two separate graves on the same day.

“These are matters which we are yet to comprehend. My father just became silent on receiving the news and it is sad that he will never get to talk again,” said Mr Bosire.

Josephine Moraa, an aunt of Kerubo, said both the national and county government of Nyamira have been very helpful to them.

“The two governments have helped us in burial expenses which we would not have managed by our own. We request for more help,” she said.