Nairobi News

LifeNewsWhat's Hot

Kalonzo: Fatal shooting of NHIF staffer could be a political assassination

By Hilary Kimuyu February 18th, 2023 3 min read

Wiper Party leader Kalonzo Musyoka has claimed that the fatal shooting of an employee of National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF), Lilian Waithera, within Nairobi’s CBD on Monday evening could have been a political assassination.

Speaking during an Azimio la Umoja rally in Kisii County on Friday, Mr Musyoka alleged that the 46-year-old woman could also have been a whistleblower in a fraud case involving NHIF.

“There is a woman who was recently shot dead by a sniper and this woman from information she could be a whistle blower. This woman was an employee of the NHIF and she way on her way home from work in Upper Hill. Their driver told them he would be late if he dropped them off. So the woman and her colleagued decided to walk to town where she was shot dead at Kaundi Street,” Mr Musyoka said.

“The media should not rush to dismiss the assassination theory. How sure are they? I mean, someone has been shot dead. Maybe this is just practice before they resume political assassinations in Kenya,” he said.

In a CCTV footage which obtained by NTV on Friday, Ms Waithera is seen walking with her colleague Damaris Achieng’ on a pavement next to Eco Bank on Kaunda Street.

As they cross the street towards Jubilee Insurance building, she stops abruptly in the middle of the road and starts moving backward as she looks down. Her colleague holds her and helps her to the pavement next to an Optica shop.

Also read: Police probe mysterious fatal shooting of NHIF employee on Kaunda Street

From the footage, it also appears there was no commotion on the street after Ms Waithera collapsed, indicating that no one heard the gunshot.

However, Minutes later, some individuals nearby are startled by the crowd that had started to gather next to the deceased and her colleague.

“A lady came to our door and said that someone had been shot and that we should call an ambulance for her. We all panicked and ran outside to see what happened. Her (the victim) face was facing downward and when the paramedics came is they turned her and that is when we saw blood oozing from her mouth and nose and it was not on her clothes,” a witness who has a shop nearby told NTV.

Police initially classified the fatality a “sudden death”, probably a heart attack, as they moved the body to the Nairobi Hospital mortuary.

It was not until the following day, when the family transferred her body to the Kenyatta University hospital mortuary, that a horror discovery that would change the course of the investigation was made.

The postmortem revealed a bullet lodged in her lungs. The cause of death was determined as a shooting. The police had to change their statement.

Also read: Stop speculating on woman shot in CBD says NHIF

“The female NHIF staff who collapsed and died [on] Kaunda Street on Monday evening had been shot from an elevated angle. [The] autopsy revealed [that] the bullet was lodged in her lungs. The bullet entered through the collar bone, having been fired from an elevated angle,” the police said in a follow up report on Tuesday.

That development shifted the focus back to the scene. But from which of the high-rise buildings would the shot have come? Who was the shooter? Was she the target? What was the motive?

Nairobi Regional Police Commander Adamson Bungei explained that the bullet that hit Ms Waithera was fired by someone who was on top of one of the buildings. There are two high-rise buildings at the scene.

Hamilton House, which houses two restaurants, Almandi Yemeni House and Dream Bean House, and several offices. Adjacent to it to the left is Eco Bank Towers.

Based on the spot with blood stains, the detailed trajectory of the bullet as captured in the postmortem report can point from which building the shot came from.

On Thursday, detectives from the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) sealed off a section of Kaunda Street to triangulate probable sniper locations.

Police sources and family members told the Nation no arrests have been made so far. Police said they were liaising with building owners on Kaunda Street to retrieve CCTV camera footage and hopefully shed more light on the incident.

Also read: Stop speculating on woman shot in CBD says NHIF