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Daughter defies parents’ bid to block wedding for refusing FGM



Her wish was to have her father and mother walk her down the aisle and hand her over to her soul mate. This was never to be. Instead, Mary Nchagwa, 21, left for her wedding yesterday escorted by armed police officers. Her mistake was to reject the cut which is common among the Kuria community.Six months ago, Mary pleaded with her parents to let her avoid Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) and bless her marriage. Her parents staunchly refused.

Yesterday, at the Pentecostal Evangelistic Fellowship of Africa (PEFA) in Ntimaru, Migori County, she exchanged vows with Zackary Chacha in a ceremony heavily guarded by police.

Mary’s parents had threatened to disrupt the event which they skipped. They described the marriage ‘dirty’ and rejected Chacha’s dowry. Chacha went against the grain and married Mary, despite the belief by conservative Kuria Kuria men that uncircumcised women are not fully matured.

As soon as Bishop Thomas Monati declared the couple husband and wife, hundreds of their supporters filled the church with deafening ululations. “I also received threats through text messages and phone calls not to preside over this wedding, but through the grace of God, and support from security agencies, I am glad we have made it,” said Monati.

“The days of forcing children into circumcision are long gone. The Kuria community has to embrace change,” he said. Mary ran away from her Wangira-Bose village in Kuria East to escape the rite in January this year.

Cleared school

“I had just cleared secondary school and I was told it was time to be circumcised. I had been strong in the church. I could not undergo the cut,” she said.

She was rescued by Robi Marwa, an anti-FGM crusader who gave her a place to stay. Two months later, Mary met Chacha. In March this year, the two lovebirds decided to get married. When Chacha decided to seek Mary’s parents for approval, he stirred a hornet’s nest. The parents said they would not accept any dowry for her unless she undergoes the cut.

“My father works in Nairobi and when I approached the family with the marriage request, my mother who was the only one at home declined to give the blessings until my father had a say in the matter,” said Mary. Her uncles too insisted on the cut.

She narrates: “At first, my father had said I was free to do whatever I wanted, but requested that we wait till the lockdown in Nairobi was lifted so that he could come home to blessing the union.

He later changed his mind and insisted on the circumcision.”Chacha said his parents, despite also being Kuria, were not averse to the nuptials. “My parents have no problem. We are ready to start a family. I also support the anti-FGM movement,” he said. Ms Marwa wants action taken against the girl’s parents. “The girl is 21 and has a right to chose whoever she wants to marry. The church stood with her. Why did the parents put her through such an agonising experience?” she asked.

Assistant County Commissioner Katana Charo, however, said Mary’s parents did not confirm to him that they were sorely opposed to the marriage because of their daughter’s refusal to be circumcised.

“When I met the girl’s family, they did not outrightly say they were opposed to the marriage because of the cut, although it could be an underlying issue,” he said.


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Uhuru’s adopted son Daniel Owira says he nearly left school after becoming rich



Daniel Owira aka Otonglo time, saw his life change in the blink of an eye back when he was in high school.

After delivering a grand performance during drama festivals, he was quickly branded as the president’s son by none other than Uhuru Kenyatta.

Several years later, the young actor told NTV he nearly dropped out of school after becoming rich.

A year after Uhuru had offered to pay for his school fees, Owira joined university and as days went by, his pockets and bank account became heavier.

He was earning cash he had never touched before and did not know what to do with all the wealth he was accumulating.

“I will not lie to you, at first year no one really knows what to do with a lot of money. I was getting sponsorships and gigs and did not know what to do with all the cash,” he said.

Even after boosting his mother’s business, providing her with pocket money and furnishing her house, Owira still had escess money he did not know how to put to use.

For a moment, the entertainer considered giving up on education and focussing on his successful career.

Luckily, Uhuru’s “son” chose to finish his academic journey and put to bed any irrational thoughts that crossed his mind.

Uhuru's adopted son Daniel Owira says he nearly left school after becoming rich

Daniel Owira back when he was in campus. Photo: Daniel Owira
Source: Instagram

As previously reported, Uhuru had promised to take care of Owira’s education up to university level.

While committing to take care of his school fees, Uhuru Kenyatta referred to Owira as one of his sons, of course figuratively.

Daniel Owira had plans to pursue a broadcast journalism in future, apparently to utilise his amazing oratory skills as evidenced by his Otonglo narrative.


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I was violently mugged at a well-lit street in Nairobi



On Friday night, I lost my precious wristwatch and my utterly worthless cellphone to muggers at a well-lit street in the Nairobi city centre.

I was heading home from work at about 8.30 pm when a gang of five hoodlums pounced on me along Aru Lane, which is a stone’s throw away from Mfangano Street where I usually board my matatu.

They swiftly cut me off my route, boxed me into a tight corner and relieved me of whatever valuables I had on me.

The guy who initially accosted me – he must have been the ringleader – had threatened to draw a gun and shoot me if I tried anything stupid.

He had both hands in his pockets, so I couldn’t tell whether he had a gun or not, but I didn’t want to take any chances.

As this guy, who was in a greyish hoodie, and his accomplice flanked me on both sides, I took a quick backwards glance and noticed two heavyset fellows closing in. By the time I shifted my gaze forward, yet another menacing figure had sprung from nowhere.

I quickly realised I was cornered and outnumbered.

In that moment, I knew it was no use trying to fight these guys off. Not even the hard-tackling tight-head prop from my rugby-playing days would save me.

I wasn’t ready to become part of the city’s grim crime statistics of those who have been maimed, or had worse things done to them by muggers.

I meekly surrendered to their demands.

The whole incident barely lasted a minute, but in the brief moment I was held hostage in that corner, my mind raced to my wife and two young kids waiting for me at home.

Mercifully, I got through the ordeal unscathed and later got home to a warm hug from my three-year-old son.

I recounted my harrowing experience to my shell-shocked household. It wasn’t until hours later that we partook our evening meal.

Dangerous streets

I’ve since fully recovered from that experience, having had some good rest over the weekend.

When I shared my story with a close relative, he also recounted a similar mugging incident that happened on a Sunday evening at the junction of Mama Ngina Street and Kimathi Street.

Unlike me, this brother attempted to be a hero and nearly paid for it with his life.

In the middle of an ill-advised scuffle with his assailants, one of the muggers drew a knife and swung it at his abdomen. He quickly ducked, and the knife only grazed his thigh.

On seeing that their would-be victim wasn’t going down without a fight, the three thugs quickly vanished into an adjacent alley.

In retrospect, he says, he would not have tried to fight back.

That is what the streets of Nairobi have become; crowded places, bustling with human and car traffic by day but which become extremely dangerous at nightfall.

ATM machines that dot the exterior parts of many banking halls in the CDB are particularly risky places to visit in the evenings, especially when streets are deserted.

So too are alleys and backstreets, including Ngamia Lane and Tausi Lane, on either side of Nation Centre.

My priceless wristwatch is gone, but I thank God I lived to tell the tale – and write a story – of my encounter with Nairobi’s ruthless muggers.

The writer is an online Sub-editor at Nation Media Group 

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Man beats up Bungoma musician for supporting DP Ruto



Police in Webuye have launched a manhunt for a handshake supporter who reportedly assaulted a musician for backing Deputy President William Ruto.

Bungoma East police boss Valarian Obore said police are looking for Mr Bernard Wakamala, alias Jaramogi, for clobbering Mr David Sakari, who usually performs in Webuye Juakali band troupe led by Kimilili MCA David Barasa.

The short statured performer is remembered for having been awarded a customised vehicle for the disabled by Dr Ruto in 2016.

Mr Obore said Mr Sakari was assaulted at Satellite Hotel in Webuye town on Friday night after praising the DP.

“He took a beer bottle and hit me on the head twice. I bled profusely before friends took me to Webuye Sub County Hospital, where I was treated and discharged,” said Mr Sakari.

Bungoma Musicians Association Chairman Kasembeli Watila condemned the incident and called on the police to speed up investigations and arrest the suspect.


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