Okombe’s father opens up about warning rugby star of accused partner

 

Kenya Michael Okombe [Photo: Boniface Okendo]

The knife attack that took the life of Michael Shitindo Okombe was not an isolated case, The Nairobian can reveal.

A similar attack, perpetrated by the same suspect, occurred in January, leaving Okombe nursing injuries that kept him out of the game for months.

The attack in January told a story of a marriage in turmoil

— a story which would hit the climax and turn tragic on November 4.

After the first attack, Josephat Shitindo Okombe warned his son and asked him to end the relationship. Okombe is said to have separated from his wife after she slashed his hand and caused an injury that kept him out of the national 15s team.

The second attack, coming barely 12 months later, and which shocked the country, rudely took away his young and promising life.

“That was the second time the assailant attacked my son, but this time he succeeded. At first she tried to pierce his left eye, but missed and injured his hand,” sobbed the old man.

Okombe had just been recalled to the national 15s team, which was preparing for the Hong Kong Cup of Nations Championships.

Before his death, Shitindo had left Emasati village in Kisa Location of Khwisero East Sub County in Kakamega  County to finalise his move to Kabras Sugar RFC from Top Fry Nakuru RFC.

Little did he know that those were his last moments with his immediate family members.

That was after he had received a call from a Nakuru RFC official less than 48 hours earlier summoning him for a meeting that could see the former Kenya Simbas international back row cum flanker seal his final move to the sugar millers.

Okombe was preparing for the 2017/2018 Kenya Cup league season that kicks off later this month.

Okombe had notified his father of the new development a day before he boarded a matatu to travel to Nakuru.

After he arrived in Nakuru and sealed the deal, Okombe was headed back to Kakamega when he received a call from long-time friend and former teammate Calvin Okoth who invited him to a birthday party of his eight-year-old son.

As a bosom friend whose friendship blossomed till they married from the same family, Okombe honoured the invitation.

Also present were seven adults who included Okoth, his wife and Okombe’s wife Mary Anne Mumbi. There were also four children among them Okombe’s daughter.

He had time to wine and dine with friends and relatives alongside some of his former club mates.

“Little did my son know those were his last moments and his longtime cherished dream of playing the game he loved most closely to his home would come to naught,” sobbed the 62-year old Okombe’s father.

The celebrations extended to the wee hours of Saturday morning, on November 4.

Sources revealed that one of teammates fondly hugged Mumbi, which did not go down well with the deceased, prompting him to have some fierce exchanges with Mumbi. Mumbi is said to have rushed to the kitchen and returned with a knife.

She is said to have stabbed Okombe on the left side of this chest. Okombe was rushed to Valley Hospital 30 minutes later in a vehicle

— which incidentally also hit a boda boda rider as it sped to the hospital at around 2.30am.

On arrival at the hospital, Okombe was pronounced dead according to Officer Commanding Rongai Police Division Japheth Kioko Ng’atua.

Meanwhile, police officers who visited the scene of crime had difficulty in investigating the matter as it emerged the blood stains in the house had been cleaned

— only leaving traces outside the house.

Seven suspects were arrested and arraigned in court. Investigations are ongoing.

Okombe and Mumbi are said to have been living separately at the time of the incident.

“Following the first incident, I had advised my son to stay away from the wife. He obliged, which resulted in their separation hence the need to transfer his playing career to Kakamega County,” lamented a weeping Mzee Okombe.

Mzee Okombe wondered why his first born son had to be killed at the prime of his career having just completed his studies in August.

The couple had a three-year-old daughter whom Mzee Okombe revealed had been brought before them in Kakamega and was shaved according to Luhya traditions as a way of ushering her into their family.

“Later on after their separation, Mumbi changed the name of Okweya and falsified her birth certificate into a new name,” alleged Mzee Okombe.

The young Okombe was a member of the National Fifteens Rugby side coached by South African Jerome Paawaters that was scheduled to take part in the Hong Kong Cup of Nations this week with the first match against Chile on Friday before taking on Russia on November 14.


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