The woman who hacked her husband to death and strangled her two children before hanging herself were all laid to rest on Thursday at Lang’ata Cemetery, Nairobi.
The massacre and suicide on July 9 shocked the country. No one knows what really happened that night, what started the killings in Thome 5 Estate.
It emerged that the husband, Joseph Gitau, was too withdrawn and embarrassed to admit that he was battered by his wife, Joyce Wanjiru. Finally, she hacked him to death.
Gitau was described as the calm father who would do anything to provide for his family.
But according to his longtime friend, Steven Kariuki, Gitau was too reserved to say what was really on his mind — he was beaten and humiliated by his wife.
“You would never notice if Gitau had problems or not. I am so mad at him, even if he’s dead. He didn’t speak to me. I didn’t know he had problems. We wouldn’t be where we are right now if he did.”
Kariuki said his “heart is very broken as we started our friendship back when we were children. Our parents are friends. I used to pass by his workplace quite often and discuss things then go back to our businesses,” Kariuki said at the burial.
Jane Mugure, the eldest child, was in Grade 2 at Marurui Karem Academy before she was murdered by her mother
Her teacher, only identified as Kariuki, described Mugure as a “beautiful angel…a hardworking pupil who was always ready to learn.”
“This is a lesson that we should all learn. We must know what is going on in our families. Back in the day, people used to talk to each other and resolve their disputes. Today’s world has changed. Let us all learn to find peace in our families,” Kariuki said.
Joyce Wanjiru, 30, hacked her husband with an axe in the back of the head and stabbed him in the back with a knife at their home in Thome 5 Estate, Nairobi.
Gitau’s body was found on the bed.
Wanjiru did not leave her two children behind as she strangled them to death.
Mugure’s body found on a couch while two-year-old Micheal Njoroge’s body was discovered on his small bed.
Wanjiru was found hanging from a roof beam.
She came to Nairobi in 2008 and started a food vending business. She later went to Marurui to continue with the same business. She is survived by two sisters and two brothers.
Gitau came to Nairobi in 2009, where he started a business, and later was employed at Marurui as a gardener. He is survived by two sisters and three brothers
The couple stayed together for 10 years.
Personal assistant for Roysambu MCA Judy Njeri urged men to express their feelings and let their voices heard.
“Men, it is high time to stand up. The boy child has as many rights as the girl child. You should also understand that it is okay to separate in case of disputes and acceptable to be called a single parent, “she said.
The clergy, community leaders and friends attended the funeral. Governor Mike Sonko’s Rescue Team helped lay the family to rest.