I wasn’t the best mum, but I never killed my baby- Nakuru woman

Susan Mutongori.

She stares blankly into empty space, lost in thought, sadness written all over her face.

She fights back tears as she opens up about a pain that ravishes her soul, and one she wishes would melt into thin air. It is a futile thought.

Serving a life sentence at Nakuru GK Prisons, Susan Mutongori, was found guilty of killing her 17- month -old baby, a crime, she says she never committed.

The mother of five, who revealed she worked as a prostitute, told The Nairobian how she found her baby’s lifeless body lying on the bed on the fateful day after coming home from her night shift.

“I used to report to work at around 9pm and return to the house at around 2am. I would leave my baby alone in the house. Before leaving, I always ensured that she was well-fed,” she said.

Mutongori revealed that due to the nature of her work, a friend advised her to give her baby sedatives so that she could sleep throughout the night.

“I bought the prescriptions from a friend who had connections with a psychiatrist at a hospital in Naivasha. At first, I was a bit hesitant, but after the first dose, she slept without interruption and I was able to leave the house,” she said.

However, on the May 30, 2006, she arrived home and realized her baby wasn’t responding or breathing.

“She was calm. I touched her wrist, but there was no pulse. I noticed some mud on the floor, but I ignored because I lived alone. At around 5am, it dawned on me that my baby was dead,” she said.

Confused, she covered her baby in shawl and dumped it near the flyover around Naivaisha Prisons. 

“I left the lifeless body of my child wrapped with a shawl. Honestly, I don’t know what I was thinking. I was too confused to even report the matter to cops,” said Mutongori.

Mutongoro continued with her life in the hope no one would find out her secret.

However, a few weeks later, her baby’s body was discovered by a neighbour leading to her arrest.

Upon interrogation, Mutongoro couldn’t explain the circumstances which lead to her baby’s death. She was arrested and charged with murder.

However, she claims in court, a pathology, who testified revealed that her baby was strangled, had a swollen head and her vagina had bruises.

“I was shocked when the doctor testified in court that my child died due to head injury and strangulation. He further informed the court that the baby was defiled, which could have led to her death, explained Mutongori.

 She was unable to explain in court how her baby was defiled and with no lawyer, she was found guilty.

“I suspect a former lover did this to my baby. Before we broke up, he had warned me that he would do something to me that I would regret. I thought he was joking,” she said.

“I hope that one day I will be allowed to see my children whom I abandoned due to my selfish interest. Being separated from my family and the other world crushes me,” she says.

Her hope is one day to receive Presidential Mercy since her appeal has been thrown out twice. However, her last chance and hope for now is the ongoing re-sentencing which she applied.

 “I cross my finger and hope that the judge handling my case will be guided by God,” she noted.

Emily Momanyi, in- charge Nakuru Prisons, speaks highly of her.

“Mutongori has reformed. She has enrolled for Theology and currently, has perfected her talent in dressmaking. She is also one of our trustee in prisons,” said the officer.