Julius Irungu, the father of Joseph ‘Jowie’ Irungu, the key suspect in the murder of businesswoman Monica Kimani, says his son appeared frail, when he [Julius] visited him at Manyani Maximum Prison in Voi on Tuesday, December 10.
Jowie was transferred from Kamiti Maximum Prison last Friday after he was allegedly nabbed in possession of prohibited material.
The suspect’s lawyer, David Ayuo, however told K24 Digital that the prisons department informed him that his client was being transferred to another detention center — 300 kilometers away — in what is treated as “routine exercise” that happens occasionally in all prisons across the country.
Jowie’s father told K24 Digital that his son confided in him that he [Jowie] was threatened by a prison officer at Kamiti, who “vowed to hide him from his family”.
At Manyani, Julius Irungu claims, Jowie is kept in isolation in a room that is “dark, dingy and simply uninhabitable”.
“My son is wondering why out of the 3, 000-plus inmates in Kamiti, he was the only one who was transferred to Manyani Maximum Prison in the so-called routine exercise,” said Julius Irungu.
“He says he was driven to Manyani while guarded by an inspector from Kamiti,” added Julius.
“I was meant to understand that since his transfer on Friday, Jowie was yet to eat. When I asked him why he had refused to have his meals, he told me that he had a gut-feeling his food was contaminated. He was in bad shape,” said the suspect’s father.
Manyani authorities, however, dismiss Jowie’s claims as “speculative” and “not founded on any concrete evidence”.
Meanwhile, Jowie’s lawyer, David Ayuo, told K24 Digital that he will move to court on Wednesday, December 11, under the certificate of urgency to request the court to order Jowie’s transfer back to Nairobi, “where his family members and lawyer can easily access him”.
“My client’s criminal case is before a Nairobi court. Logistically, it is very hard for us — his legal team — to access him in a detention center that is 300 kilometers away from the capital city,” said Ayuo.
The bail application of Jowie, who has been in remand for over one year-and-two-months now, will be heard on February 13, 2020.