Elizabeth Maua Malombe, the mother of 31-year-old Joyce Syombua, who was found dead and buried in Nanyuki on Saturday, November 16, has revealed that she had pleaded with her daughter in mid-October to terminate her plan of visiting her estranged husband Peter Mugure at the Nanyuki Barracks on October 25.
Malombe said she listened to her intuition, which communicated to her that something bad was going to happen to her daughter and grandchildren should they visit Mugure in Laikipia.
“A week to October 25, when Syombua and the children left for Nanyuki, my daughter had won a child maintenance case in a Nairobi court. Syombua had sued Mugure for child upkeep after he said he couldn’t support the children because he was not sure that the kids were sired by him. One week to October 25, the judge ruled that Mugure should provide for the children after DNA test results on the kids revealed that he was their biological father,” Malombe told Citizen Television on Saturday.
“The court also ruled that Mugure should be granted regular access to the children. And in a bid to abide by that order, my daughter planned to visit Mugure with the children on October 25. I, however, warned her that my intuition was not for the visit, and that Mugure should come to Kayole, Nairobi and see the children; that was on October 24. My daughter, however, told me that nothing bad would happen to them, and that Mugure had even sent her bus-fare to visit him in Nanyuki. I told her: ‘Okay, go ahead with your plan, but know that I am against it,” said Malombe.
Syombua’s friend, Farizana Syombua, who spoke to Citizen Television, revealed that the mother-of-two had told her some-time this year that Mugure had expressed doubts on whether he indeed sired Syombua’s second child, 5-year-old Prince Michael.
“Syombua told me that Mugure often said he was sure that Shanice,10, was his daughter, but the second born, Mike (Prince Michael), was not his,” said Farizana.
These revelations come after police in Laikipia recovered three bodies suspected to be those of Joyce Syombua and her two children, who went missing on October 26.
The bodies, which had been wrapped in sacks, were exhumed from a grave in Makaburini, Thingithu area in Laikipia County Saturday evening.
Confirming the shocking discovery to K24 Digital, Laikipia County Criminal Investigation lead officer, Peter Mwau Muinde, said DNA tests are yet to be conducted on the three to ascertain their identities.
“Our investigations led us to this scene after several informers spoke to us,” said Muinde.
“At around 4:30pm [Saturday], we recovered three bodies which we suspect belong to Joyce Syombua and her children Shanice Maua and Prince Michael. We will conduct DNA tests on the bodies to ascertain their identities,” added Muinde, who said they have been working closely with military officers to trace the missing persons.
Police took the bodies to Nanyuki Teaching and Referral Hospital morgue.
Syombua’s husband, Peter Mugure, a Nanyuki-based military officer, was on Friday, November 15, arrested in connection with the disappearances of his estranged wife and their two children. He will be produced in court on Monday, November 18.
The DCI said that they will seek to hold Mugure in custody for longer as they piece together evidence that could link the suspect to the mother-and-children’s October 26, 2019 disappearances.
Mugure, who is being held at Nanyuki Police Station, was arrested on Friday, November 15, after recording a statement in regard to his kinpersons’ disappearances.
The DCI say that Mugure is being treated as the chief suspect in the disappearances of Joyce Syombua, 31, her children: Shanice Maua, 10, and Prince Michael, 5. The three went missing on October 26.
It has been established that Syombua, Shanice and Michael, who stay in Kayole, Nairobi, visited Mugure at his Nanyuki barracks residence on October 25 upon Mugure’s invitation.
Police say that Syombua and Mugure, who had been in an on-and-off relationship for 13 years, had an agreement that Syombua allows the children to regularly visit Mugure. That agreement was arrived at after a Nairobi court granted Syombua sole custody of the children.
According to Syombua’s mother, Maua Malombe, her daughter’s relationship with Mugure was frosty by the time she went missing.
Call and text records show that on October 25 and 26, Syombua regularly communicated with her female friend, telling her that Mugure had taken the children out, but did not return home with them. When Syombua reportedly asked where Mugure had left the children, he allegedly told her that he dropped them at his friend’s place so that they [Syombua and Mugure] could have a private time to iron out their differences.
Syombua’s friend would later call her at 7pm on October 26, but her phone line was not reachable.
Syombua’s husband, Mugure, told police that he escorted the mother-of-two and the kids to a Nanyuki bus stage on October 26, where they boarded a Nairobi-bound matatu.
According to the suspect, that was the last time he interacted with his family.
Syombua’s mother, Maua Malombe, now wants DCI boss George Kinoti to personally take up the matter.