Kenya: Mystery of Two Brothers Who Had Lunch, Then Disappeared Without a Trace

20 October 2020

Three weeks after the mysterious disappearance of two Nakuru-based bothers, police still have no concrete leads on their whereabouts.

The duo -- Joseph Macharia, 39, a teacher at Kijabe Girls' High School and Moses Kamau, 37, a land broker cum businessman -- went missing on September 21.

Mr Kamau also operated an electronics equipment shop at Pinkam Building in the Nakuru Central Business District.

Detectives from the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) are trying to piece together information in a bid to unravel the mystery surrounding their disappearance.

A senior detective told the Nation that their last phone signals were around Nakuru Golf Club, which borders the expansive Menengai Forest.

"Kamau's phone signals were located at around 1.29pm on September 21 before they went missing. Macharia's went off a few minutes later. We are still piecing together information to help trace them. So far we have made progress," said the detective who sought anonymity.

By Friday, sleuths were still analysing mobile phone data and tracking their movements as well as establishing the last people they were in touch with.

"We have established that the two brothers had lunch at Shemeji Hotel before their phone signals were located within Nakuru Golf Club and thereafter went missing," revealed another detective.

Questions still abound on whether they were the ones in possession of their phones at the time of disappearance.

Family unhappy with police

Nakuru County police commander Stanley Kilonzi on Friday maintained that detectives have intensified their search for the duo, but their families disagree.

Their families claim that police are dragging their feet, leaving them devastated and with no hope of tracing their kin.

"We have been to the Nakuru regional DCI offices. Every time we are told to wait for a comprehensive report about the disappearance. Why can't the police fast-track the investigations and establish if the two were kidnapped or might have been killed?" asked a family member who sought anonymity.

Some family members believe the pair may have been kidnapped by unknown assailants over a business deal gone sour.

Their loved ones have combed the expansive Menengai forest over the past two weeks but come up with nothing.

Since they disappeared, family members have been meeting every day at their grandmother's home in Kwa Amos, Bahati.

On September 25, the family reported their disappearance at Kiugoine police station, and the matter was recorded in the Occurrence Book (OB) under number 013/13/25/2020.

At the Nakuru Central police station, the OB number was booked under 33/27/9/2020.

The Nation established that several family members had recorded statements with the police over the disappearance.

Their ancestral home is in Engashura, Bahati , Nakuru county, but Kamau lived with two wives and his children at Kwa Amos area in Bahati. His brother Macharia lived with his family at Salgaa trading centre on the Nakuru-Eldoret highway.

On the day they went missing, Macharia was on his way from Salgaa to a wedding committee meeting for his primary school teacher's child at Engashura.

But, as fate would have it, he never made it to the function.

He met Kamau in Nakuru at around 11am, where they had lunch together at Shemeji Hotel before they went missing.

Macharia has two wives and is a father of four, while Kamau has seven children and two wives.

Family members now want police to speed up the investigations.

"They had lunch together before they went missing. Since they went missing, we have visited several areas including local mortuaries, hospitals and nearby forests, in a bid to trace their whereabouts but all has been in vain. We hope that we will find them alive," said Joel Theuri, a relative.

According to an aunt, Grace Njoki, their phones were switched off moments after one of them (Kamau) communicated with his wife.

Mystery third person

"Kamau has two wives and had communicated with one of them before his phone went off. He told her he was in the company of his brother Macharia at a hotel sealing a deal, but he did not give details of what exactly they were doing at the place," said Njoki.

"Their phones have never been switched on. The family has not heard from them for two weeks now. We don't know what happened but we hope to find them alive," she said.

Detectives in Nakuru are yet to identify the third person who was with the two brothers at the time of their disappearance after they had lunch.

Nakuru Human Rights Network director, David Kuria, has also appealed to police to speed up investigations and help trace the brothers.

"I ask the police to work closely with family members to get more information that can help solve the puzzle," said Mr Kuria.

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