The Senate Standing Committee on Justice, Legal Affairs and Human Rights has launched a campaign to have the British government pay colonial hero Muindi Mbingu for past injustices done to his descendants.
The Mbingu family is requesting payment for the 80,960 cattle that they believe the colonists forcibly took away.
JLAC visited and listened to the horrific experiences that the victims of the Akamba community were subjected to by the colonial rulers in 1938. The meeting was held at Ngelani chief’s camp in Machakos.
The committee, led by Senator Hillary Sigei of Bomet, expressed empathy for the cruel and terrible suffering endured by the community’s founding fathers.
According to the community, the cattle were killed by British soldiers, and the healthy ones were taken away by force. A generation was supposedly lost as a result of them beating up men before castrating them.
Senator Sigei stated that the Attorney General will submit a report on those who lost their properties to colonialists, and he added that a law should be in place to determine how these individuals will be compensated starting in 1938 including asking ask the Kenyan government to pursue justice.
Machakos Senator Agnes Kavindu called on President William Ruto and King Charles III of Britain to see how the injustices done to the community – including some people being detained without trial, suffering economic crimes, and having their land and cows taken – can be made right. She vowed not to leave any stone unturned.
According to her, some of the expectant mothers suffered psychologically from being made to lie down and then trampled on on their backs, while other women were raped in public in front of their husbands.
Lukas Kituku Mutuma, the chair of the community comprising close to 800 members, revealed how governors in the colonial era allowed such brutalities to be meted upon the families, especially when they went to Kariokor in Nairobi to demand their cattle.
Machakos MP Caleb Mule chimed in to note that some children were left orphans and never went to school after their fathers were imprisoned, adding that many who were released came back to find their properties taken.
One of the victims, Agnes Wanza Kimeu, narrated how her father and grandfather were humiliated and killed.
The Senators now want the community to get psychological support, further demanding that King Charles III – who just concluded his Kenya visit – should offer an apology on behalf of the British government.
They presented the petition in the Senate seeking the victims’ compensation and said that listening to the experiences will help them table a comprehensive report.
Busia Senator Okiya Omtatah took issue with former regimes that should have sorted these problems saying the rights of everybody should be respected.
Omtatah compared the community with the Empakasi community of Kajiado County which is still pushing to get their colonial land that they were evicted from in Kitengela.