Nairobi News


Child trafficking: 16 children rescued in Kayole house

By Winnie Onyando February 19th, 2024 2 min read

On February 18, 2024, a distressing report surfaced concerning child trafficking in Nyando, Kayole Sub County.

Acting on information provided by a Children Protection Officer from Embakasi Central Constituency, authorities from Soweto Police Station swiftly intervened.

Officers gained access to a plot where alarming conditions were discovered. Inside a two-roomed rental house, 16 children were found under the care of Linet Akinyi and Isaack Mwanjeka, a 54-year-old Tanzanian national.

Shockingly, neither caregiver could provide a satisfactory account of how the children came to be in their custody.

The rescued children, ranging from ages 2 to 16, were swiftly removed from the premises and temporarily placed under the care of Salome Mituri Wambui, the founder of By Grace Children’s Home in Nyando.

The case, now under the jurisdiction of the Police, is being handled by the Kayole Division of the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI).

The swift action taken by law enforcement agencies underscores the commitment to combating child trafficking and ensuring the safety and well-being of vulnerable children in the community.

This is not an isolated case, a former employee of Mama Lucy Kibaki Hospital in Nairobi was found guilty and convicted on a criminal charge of child trafficking.

Fred Makallah was charged with child trafficking two years ago following an exposé that aired on UK-based broadcaster BBC.

He had been charged alongside his colleague Selina Awuor. The two had previously been charged with three counts of child trafficking in person and child neglect.

They faced charges of trafficking minors aged three weeks, two months and eight months between April 30 and May 20, 2020. They allegedly hatched the plot to engage in the syndicate between March 1 and November 16, 2020.

Trial Magistrate Esther Kimilu found Makallah guilty of child trafficking in person but acquitted the co-accused Awuor on the same criminal charge of child trafficking.

In her judgment, the Magistrate said Makallah was captured in a video clip negotiating for the sale of the three children who were under his custody in 2020.

The arrest of the two workers on May 18, 2020, followed an exposé that aired on BBC Africa titled The Baby Stealers. It showed how child trafficking was rife at the public health facility.

The three children were stolen from the hospital and passed on to third parties at a fee. According to the BBC Eye exposé, a gang of organised criminals had been stealing children from homeless mothers and selling them for as little as Sh45,000.