Mourners in shock after burial is stopped over wrong corpse in Kisii

Open grave [Photo: Courtesy]

A funeral service at a Mosensema Village in Bomachoge, Kisii County on Friday came to an unexpected end after mourners discovered that they were just about to bury the wrong body.

Shocked mourners, who had turned up to give Ms Orpha Omweri a decent send off, were forced to leave after an announcement was made to the effect that they had the wrong corpse.

The deceased died on December 17 at the Kenyatta National Hospital, where she was undergoing treatment for undisclosed ailment.

Upon her death, her remains were taken to the hospital’s mortuary for storage, awaiting for the eventual transportation to her Kisii home for burial.

However, a confusion is said to have occurred when members of her family went to the mortuary on Thursday to collect her body. They, unfortunately, picked the wrong body, which they transported all the way to her home in Borabu Constituency.

Some family members who spoke to the Crazy Monday said that immediately they noticed the anomaly, they alerted Police Officers before the body was transported back to the Kenyatta National Hospital Mortuary, so as to ensure that they came home with the rightful body of their deceased kin.

Rose Mageri, a daughter to the deceased who had accompanied other family members to Nairobi to collect the body of her mother said that she told other family members that the body they wanted to take home was not her mother’s but they did not take her seriously assuming that she had lost her mind.

“I told my relatives that the body they wanted to take home for burial did not belong to my mother, but they dismissed me since they thought I was not in my right senses. I gave in but eventually I was proven right when, upon more scrutiny, my other sibling confirmed that the corpse was not that of our mother,” said Mageri.

When Crazy Monday visited the family home, the grave dug to bury Ms Omweri was covered using iron sheets to prevent it from being rained on, a person or an animal felling inside. The family is preparing to transport the body of their kin in the course of next week, after police took away the wrong one.

Some elders, who spoke to the Standard at the home, said that Gusii traditions dictated that a ritual, which includes a goat being sacrificed to appease the ancestors and spirits, be carried out.

“This is necessary to help ward off any evil spirits or bad omen from the home,” said Ongeri, a local.