Unfaithfulness, exploitation and interference with previous marriage allegedly led ex-KDF soldier Major Peter Mugure to murder his estranged wife Joyce Syombua and her two children at the Laikipia Air Base in October last year.
This was part of the account of Mugure’s co-accused, Collins Pamba’s confession he recorded with the police upon arrest that the State was relying upon in applying to have the accused denied bail at the High court in Nyeri.
The State intends to rely upon his statement as evidence against the Kenya Air force Soldier who is facing three counts of murder of 31-year-old Syombua and her two children, Shanice Maua, 10 and Prince Michael, 5. He has so far denied committing the offense.
While ruling on the bail application on Friday, Judge Jairus Ngaah, read Pamba’s blow-by-blow account of how the accused allegedly executed the heinous murders.
Pamba who was a casual worker at the military base recorded that Mugure told him he wanted to marry Syombua as a second wife but she was unfaithful and was just interested in the financial support she was getting from him.
“HE TOLD ME THAT HE LOVED THE LADY AND WANTED TO MARRY HER AS A SECOND WIFE BUT SHE WAS NOT FAITHFUL AND ONLY WANTED HIM TO KEEP SPENDING MONEY ON HER AND HER CHILDREN,” READ PART OF THE ACCOUNT.
The statement further read:
“HE TOLD ME THE LADY HAD TRIED TO INTERFERE WITH HIS FIRST WIFE WHILE SHE HAD NO PROBLEM WITH HER.”
In his account of how he assisted the accused in disposing the bodies, Pamba said Mugure contacted him via his phone on October 26 telling him he had some assignment for him to carryout.
The investigating officer, Corporal Reuben Mwaniki in his sworn affidavit reported that the accused sister, Nancy Mugure, visited Pamba at Kerugoya Prison where he is being held to persuade him to renounce his account ostensibly on the grounds that it was obtained through coercion, torture and intimidation.
He confirmed that he had visited the facility and even got a record of visitors’ book with her name entry on it on the material date where she indicated she was a friend of the co-accused.
The prosecution further maintained that the accused had a lot of influence considering the position he held in the army which put him in a position to interfere with witnesses or even abscond.
In his ruling Judge Ngaah obliged to the application and denied him bail noting that the State had adduced compelling reasons to that effect.
He noted that given the gravity of the charges and the severity of the sentence should he be convicted of murder, the possibility of him interfering with witnesses or absconding could not be ignored.
He further said the defense had not refuted witness interference account by the prosecution via an affidavit neither by the accused or his sister.
“The State has demonstrated to my satisfaction that the accused tried to interfere with the witness while in custody and if released on bond he could achieve much more,” said Judge Ngaah.
“The safer option is to detain the accused rather than release him on bail,” ruled the judge. The matter will come up for hearing on March 3.
Story credits: KNA by Samuel Waititu