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Boda boda killed in dispute over campaign cash

Police on Monday exhumed from a shallow grave in Othaya the body of a boda boda rider killed in a suspected dispute over campaign money.

The motorcyclist, who was identified by his colleagues as Joseph Githaiga, had been buried on a farm in Munaine, a few kilometres from Othaya Town. He, however, hailed from Gitugi, where he conducted his business.

The shallow grave was discovered by some residents around 7am.

“Some children noticed a trail of blood on an access road and alerted us. We followed the trail to a spot that appeared to have been freshly dug,” said Mr Patrick Gatheru, a resident.


Upon digging, the residents found a shoe and alerted the police about the discovery. The officers later dug up the body of the rider.

It appears the rider was abducted from Gitugi and killed in Munaine, 18 kilometres away.

Preliminary findings by crime scene investigators show that the man was stabbed at the back of the head.

An investigator privy to the case said it was likely that the crime was committed after a disagreement over money earned from political campaigns.

Othaya police boss Joseph Mwika, however, could not confirm the amount involved. He said officers would question the motorcyclist’s colleagues.


“Young men, especially boda boda riders, are being used for political campaigns and they often fight over the money. This is probably what led to the death,” said the police boss.

Boda boda riders have become a key tool in political campaigns and have often been reported to disagree over payouts from politicians.

Police records show that the incident that took place yesterday is the third such case in the last three months in Nyeri.

Two weeks ago, a 25-year-old rider was hacked to death in Othaya after he was accused of swindling his colleagues of campaign cash.

Initially, police said they suspected that the man, identified as Geoffrey Maina, also from Gitugi, was killed over a drug deal gone sour based on his previous record of peddling bhang in the town.

Police said they had made no arrests at the time.

Fresh details have since emerged that the man quarrelled with other riders, who had accused him of conning them of their money.