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Mystery of Kenyan stowaway who fell from plane deepens

By Amina Wako November 14th, 2019 2 min read

The mystery surrounding the identity of the stowaway who fell from a Kenya Airways plane as it approached London has deepened days after Sky News exclusively reported about his identity.

But who is the real Stowaway?

The investigative story by Sky News revealed the name of the Stowaway as Paul Manyasi, a 29-year-old and a cleaner at Colnet Limited Kenya at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport. That’s where the Boeing 787 took off for Heathrow Airport.

Both Colnet Limited Kenya and the Kenya Airports Authority (KAA) have since denounced reports that the man identified worked at the airport.

Here in Kenya, journalist John Sparks spoke to the family of Manyasi at their mud-walled house in Makhwabuye village in Malava constituency, Kakamega county.

The father had early identified his son as Paul Manyasi through a photo shared by Sparks. He even identified a small black bag, a pair of sports shoes and underwear as belonging to his son. His belongings were released by London’s metropolitan Police.

A day after the story was aired, the parents changed their narratives and denied Manyasi as their son and said their son’s name is Cedric Shivonje.

Where is Cedric Shivonje?

When asked about Cedric, the parents said their son was at Industrial Area Remand Prison after being arrested in July.

Nairobi News has establish that there is no inmate by that name at the prison.

So maybe he was booked in with a different name. But how hard is it for the authorities at the prison to find Cedric after his pictures went viral?

The father has also said he has not been into contact with his son Cedric since 2017 and his phone has been off.

So how did he know his son was arrest in June and is in prison?

Why is KAA denying Manyasi worked for Colnet?

KAA and Colnet Limited Kenya, the company for which Manyasi was allegedly working for, earlier on Wednesday dismissed the Sky News investigation, saying the man never worked for them.

If indeed he worked for the cleaning company, a lot will be at stake for Kenya in the air industry.

According to a security expert, the security breach is likely to complicate matters for Kenya, which in 2017 acquired Category 1 Status, making direct flights possible to New York’s John F. Kennedy Airport.

The stowaway whom the London Metropolitan Police believes is a Kenyan might lead to the downgrading of the JKIA status. This is whether they accept or deny liability.

What are the friends of Manyasi saying?

According to the girlfriend who spoke to Sky News, Manyasi is the same man who fell from the KQ plane to London.

Another friend says the pictures which have been revealed of Manyasi are those of one of Cedric Shivonje who was a teacher at Kawangware.

The friend says, Cedric was last seen in August when he was arrested by the police for defiling one of his students.

According to Thomas Wanyama, one of his roommates back in 2017, he was arrested and was held at Industrial Area Remand Prison where he even visited him.

Shivonje’s friends says due to his character of using other people’s identify he could have been arrested under a different name.

“When he was taken to court for the defilement case he gave out a different identity,” said one of his friend who sought anonymity.