A suicidal woman who stabbed her four children in Kisumu claims marital woes pushed her to commit the heinous act.
Mercy Anyango, 29, said she separated from her husband George Oketch following numerous domestic squabbles. She moved away from the troubled home to a nearby village where she got casual jobs at a farm.
“The person who gave me the job of working in his farm also understood my situation and gave me some small house within his compound, where I lived with my children,” she said.
According to Anyango, the father of her children was uneasy with her living in the same village and threatened her several times. This forced her to move to Awasi in Kisumu County.
She said she wanted to start a business with the pay from her previous job but her employer told her Oketch had been visiting their home, threatening to harm her family should she send any money to Anyango.
“I could not fend for my children, and my husband had also declined to support them. So I wanted to have some rest,” Anyango said from her hospital bed.
On his part, Oketch denied being the cause of the alleged murder-suicide attempt.
“She is the one who moved out of our family home with all our five children, but our 15-year-old firstborn managed to return,” said Oketch.
He claimed Anyango was married in the home where she said she was working, forcing him to claim custody of the children.
“This is an issue we have been following through the Children’s Department so that I can take my children and let her move on. But the matter has not been settled. I was surprised to receive information that she attempted to kill herself and the children,” said Oketch as quoted by the Nairobian.
Meanwhile, Kisumu County Police Commander Renson Lolmodol said Mercy Anyango is likely to face charges of attempted murder and suicide.
“We are waiting for her to get relief before police can take over the matter. She may have to face charges of attempted murder of the children and attempted suicide.”
Anyango and her children — two girls and two boys aged between 5 and 13— were admitted with open wounds caused by knife stabs.
On Wednesday, Jaramogi Teaching and Referral Hospital CEO Peter Okoth said four were stable and might be discharged in the next three days.
“Only one child seems not to be in a very stable condition, but the doctors are working round the clock to ensure all the patients are out of danger,” said Dr Okoth.