Bizarre funeral by Nakuru refugees

Refugees in Nakuru yesterday grabbed a body from a government morgue then buried it in cement in a show of growing disaffection with Kenya’s leadership.

The group also matched through the streets of Nakuru town with the body before forcefully burying the it at the Nakuru North cemetery, contrary to instructions by hospital officials, according to the NTV.

The body was that of a 9 year old child, killed by a vehicle outside a camp for internally displaced persons in Nakuru. The camp consists of people evicted from other parts of the Rift Valley province during ethnic and political violence earlier this year. A government hospital had refused to release the body citing accumulated mortuary fees which the boy’s family is unable to pay.

Yesterday, relatives and other persons within the camp stormed the public hospital, forcibly removed the body and placed it in a wooden coffin. Afterwards, they marched with the coffin along the streets of Nakuru town inspite of warnings by riot police. The procession went to the Nakuru North Cemetery in defiance of a notice to bury the boy elsewhere.

There was more drama when mourners dug a grave by themselves, deeper than the required 6 feet. After placing the coffin in the grave, cement was poured in order to prevent the government from exhuming the body.

The refugees are angry with the government for demanding hospital and mortuary fees inspite of their difficulties. Additionally, refugees are against a government decision to send them to their former homes. The refugees argue that perpetrators of the ethnic violence have not been arrested and could attack again in future.

Most internal refugees across the country have accused political leaders of abandoning them inspite of the formation of a giant coalition cabinet. The coalition includes all the parties that contested the last general elections, held on December 27th.

Kenyan leaders have been criticized for showing more interest in powerful positions than in the welfare of the population in a country whose social and economic indicators are at the bottom of the ranks. Kenyan legislators consistently give themselves huge perks while inciting inter-ethnic strife among the masses in the countryside.


One Response

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