Men search for parents lost years ago
He was nine. His mother Jennifer Olimbwa left their then home in Kibra, Nairobi, with two of his siblings-Mbesa and Mutinda- to attend a funeral in her home country Uganda. She promised to be back in four days.
That was back in 1994, on the April 14, to be precise. It is the last Francis Ngulu, now 34, and his elder brother Robert Muli ever saw her.
“I don’t remember whether she had gone for the burial of her mother or father but I know she had promised to be back by April 18, 1994,” says Ngulu, a boda boda operator in Mikindani, Mombasa.
By then, their polygamous father Peter Kilonzi was away at their rural home in Mwingi, Kitui County where he worked as a traditional medicine man. On getting back, Ngulu says their father employed a maid to take care of them and left.
The father would then return and take them to their home village in Mwingi before leaving the following day only to return in 1999.
“When he returned, he took us to Machakos where he had two other homes at Kenya Israel area and Masii,” Ngulu recalls. Shortly after, however, he too disappeared –for good.
“Since then, we have not seen our parents. We have endured numerous struggles. …we have sought divine intervention from pastors and they say our parents are alive and wealthy,” he says.
Growing up without parental care, the brothers resorted to doing odd jobs to earn a living.
“We would sell roasted maize at Makutano in Machakos, graze herds of cattle and all sorts of crazy jobs just to eke a living,” he says. They say it has been a difficult test in life, a situation they add has been made worse by the psychological effect of staying for decades unsure whether the parents are dead or alive.
Today, Ngulu is married and a father of one daughter, but the two brothers are worried that their efforts in life have failed to dislodge them from the quagmire of endless problems.
“I am now 36-years-old but I don’t have a family, a home, my life is just hopeless…I have unsuccessfully tried to commit suicide on several occasions…we believe that if our parents were around we could not be in this miserable state,” says Muli, who suspects witchcraft for their woes.
“We are asking Kenyans and other nationals of goodwill to help us reunite with our parents because we are in deep problems at the moment and only them can help us out,” says Ngulu.