A family in Mlolongo, Machakos County is in distress after their daughter died from a police gunshot during the opposition's protests on Wednesday, July 12, 2023.
20-year-old Faith Wanjiru was among the four victims who succumbed to bullet injuries during the day-long violent anti-government demonstrations.
Wanjiru was a student at St Joseph Catholic Tailoring College and succumbed to a bullet injury that was lodged on her left shoulder from the back.
She was pronounced dead at Mariakani Hospital shortly after arrival.
At her family rental house in Mlolongo town, tearful friends and family members gathered speaking in low tones.
Wanjiru's mother Rose Wamaitha was among the group of mourners.
The single mother of two sells groceries in the town. On Thursday, a friend stood in for her but her stock was limited to avocados.
For the 38-year-old, the pain of losing her firstborn daughter is unbearable. She narrates the pain of the sad news that was broken to her via a phone call.
To her, the fact that her daughter was not among the protesters saddens her more.
Breaking the untimely news to her last-born child, aged 10, is even worsening the burden. She describes her daughter as hard-working and respectful.
"Wanjiru was my hope. I have struggled financially to raise money to pay for her tailoring course which she joined recently. It is heartbreaking that she died of a bullet. I am certain she was not in the protest and she was a victim caught in the middle of the fracas," Wamaitha narrated.
According to Wamaitha, on the fateful day, her daughter was scheduled to attend class until midday but was caught in the melee in the afternoon as she embarked to her house a few meters from her learning institution.
The family members appeal to the government to resolve the unrest linked to the high cost of living to avert untimely deaths of innocent civilians.
"The government should take responsibility when it comes to safety of all civilians. Families have been left mourning because of protests that turn chaotic. Government should take a step of solving the outstanding problem because if the trend continues the future of every Kenyan is at stake,"Ann Gathoni appealed.
Wanjiru body is preserved at Kitengela Sub-county hospital morgue as the family embarks on burial preparation.