In 2006, a seemingly ordinary Sunday in Ngong, Matasia took a dark turn for Kinyanjui, a 31-year-old carpenter, and his family.
Little did he know that the events of that day would alter the course of his life forever.
The tale unfolded with a visit to the past, providing a glimpse into a day that became a turning point for a man who grappled with emotions that spiraled out of control.
The day began like any other, with Kinyanjui’s wife leaving for church at 10 am. She returned at 1 pm, and the family gathered for lunch. However, as the day progressed, an unsettling revelation awaited Kinyanjui upon his return from his chama at 9 pm. The gates were locked, prompting him to scale the wall, believing his family was asleep.
The night took a grim turn when, confronted by barking dogs, Kinyanjui saw a half-naked man coming from his house – a man who turned out to be his farm worker and a friend. Shock and humiliation gripped Kinyanjui, leading to a confrontation with his wife.
The confrontation escalated, and in the presence of their children, Kinyanjui strangled his wife to death, a moment of rage that would change everything.
“This was the woman I married in church; the mother of my kids whom I sacrificed a lot to give a good life. When I saw that man coming out of my house, my blood started boiling and there was no doubt in my mind that he was sleeping with her.” Kinyanjui recalled after the deadly act.
Remanded at Industrial Area before being sentenced to death, Kinyanjui has spent the last five years grappling with the consequences of his actions within the confines of Kamiti Prison.
Before imprisonment, he was not only a carpenter but also a provider, selling borehole water to neighbors and engaging in farming. Life, as he knew it, crumbled in the wake of that fateful night.
In an introspective admission, Kinyanjui reflects on the depth of his anger and the regret that followed. Denying the offense initially, he faced the harsh reality of his actions as his children, witnesses to the tragedy, testified against him. The pain was compounded by the fact that his children saw everything unfold before their eyes.
Amidst the bleakness of his situation, Kinyanjui clings to the hope of forgiveness. He acknowledges the support he has received from his wife’s family, particularly his father-in-law, a preacher who has extended love and counseling. Their forgiveness, he believes, has provided him with some semblance of peace in the midst of his imprisonment.
As Kinyanjui navigates the complexities of guilt and remorse, he imparts a sobering piece of advice to others. Drawing from his own tragic experience, he underscores the dangers of acting in anger, urging individuals to remove themselves from volatile situations rather than succumb to impulsive actions that could lead to irreparable consequences.
Within the confines of Kamiti Prison, Kinyanjui has found a purpose in carpentry. A skill ingrained in him, he now trains fellow inmates in the craft, emphasizing the importance of giving back to society.
The narrative takes a poignant turn as Kinyanjui revisits the happier times with his late wife, Damaris.
“We were happy and everything was going well for us. Our businesses were doing well. I used to own several parcels of land where I would do farming and take my produce to Ngong market. We wedded in church on November 30, 2002. She was my first love and that’s why I failed to understand why she would do that to me after eight years of marriage. If you have ever loved someone, you would know what I’m talking about. I’m a teetotaller and I did everything to please her,” said Kinyanjui