Family demands justice as kin dies after matatu scuffle
Family members and friends of Judy Wanjiku, the 26-year-old Equity Bank staff who died after allegedly being thrown out of a moving Memba Sacco matatu on Saturday near Juja Police Station, are now demanding justice for her.
Wanjiku, who hails from Kiharu in Murang’a county, alongside another victim, are reported to have been violently shoved off the vehicle, following a fare disagreement between them, the driver and the tout.
According to witnesses who spoke to People Daily yesterday, the vehicle operators reportedly charged Wanjiku Sh400 from Kenyatta Road in Juja to Mwea, where she was heading, a fare higher than what is normally charged.
The trio is reported to have started arguing over the same from Kenyatta Road to Juja, when the tout decided to give her back her money but allegedly charged her Sh200 for the Sh50 distance.
“The main confrontation was about hiked fare to Mwea where she was headed,” said a witness.
Mary Muthoni, who operates a grocery near the scene of the incident, said she heard a commotion near the highway and upon going to check, she found a woman crying.
With two other women, Muthoni said they took Wanjiku to the hospital. “It was sad to see a lady complain that she was not feeling well, but the tout continued to throw her out. Justice for her should be served without delay,” said Muthoni.
John Mwangi Njoroge, the man who went to save Wanjiku after the driver threatened to run over her, suffered injuries on his knees and his hands.
Mwangi, who operates a car wash near the scene of the incident, said he acted quickly and pulled the lady out of the matatu’s path.
“I was relaxing near the carwash and when I saw what happened, I decided to go and save her.
The two of us were hit by the vehicle’s door whereby Wanjiku fell on the pavement suffering head wounds while I fell on the road,” said Mwangi.
Family members led by Isaac Nyaga, a brother to the deceased said his sister, was moving to Mwea when the incident happened.
He said that his only sister, the bread winner in their family, was admitted at Equity Afia hospital in Ruiru where she was treated and discharged.
On Sunday, Nyaga said that he received a call from a family member who had gone to check on her, reporting that Wanjiku had been found lying on the floor.
“I hurriedly rushed to her place and took her to Equity Afia Hospital, but we were referred to Thika Level Five Hospital where she died almost immediately while undergoing treatment,” explained Nyaga.
As postmortem was being carried out to ascertain the real cause of Wanjiku’s death yesterday, Murang’a Senator Irungu Kang’ata took to Twitter, demanding arrest of the vehicle driver and his conductor, joining a growing number of netizens who reacted to the inhumanity.
But police said they were on top of the matter and that the vehicle, KCZ 729C from which Wanjiku was thrown out, had already been detained at Juja Police Station.
Juja Sub-County Police Commander Dorothy Migarusha, said detectives were in pursuit of the driver, Stanley Macharia and his conductor who are still at large.
“We are making all efforts to ensure that Macharia is arrested so that we get his statement and to help us understand what transpired during the incident.
We are asking the suspect to surrender to any police station near him,” said Migarusha. Wanjiku’s body is being preserved at Thika Level Five Hospital’s morgue.