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Citizen Weekly

Tuesday, 6 January 2015


Kenyans will wait longer to know what caused the death of Opposition leader Raila Odinga’s first-born, Fidel, after a day-long postmortem exam Tuesday failed to yield conclusive finding, paving way for further and more complex scientific tests. The inconclusive results after examination of Fidel’s body by government and family pathologists at Lee Funeral Home from 7.30am to7pm, when a briefing was made, will prolong the agony of family and friends. Both parties agreed to resort to intensive laboratory analyses of samples taken to determine the cause of death and since it was unclear how long that would take, there is a possibility that Fidel, whose burial is scheduled on Saturday, could be laid to rest before it is known what killed him. The postmortem was done by Dr DorothyNjeru, the lead government pathologist, in collaboration with family pathologists Dr Emily Rogena and Dr Bessie Byakika. The Chief Government Pathologist Johannsen Oduor supervised the exercise. "We carried out the postmortem in two parts: body examination and body dissection. However we were unable to come up with the cause of death. We will now proceed to laboratory analysis to try and analyse the samples collected and the process begins now. Once we conclude we will give a comprehensive report," Dr Njeru explained. Rogena added: "We are in complete agreement with my colleague that it was completely impossible to determine the cause of death. We undertook an examination of several samples collected." See also: Condolences: Muthee comforts Raila family Rogena explained they had carried out toxicology and histology examinations but could not determine the cause of death. "We call this examination toxicology and histology in the scientific language. We have taken a number of samples to establish cause of death. As of now, we have agreed nothing tangible was found to explain cause of death," added Dr Rogena. Senator James Orengo (Siaya), who was present throughout the autopsy, said it was a tedious process, which lasted the whole day. "This process started at 7.30am and has just been concluded now," said Orengo, who spoke to the media at Lee Funeral Home at around 7pm. He continued: "Chief government pathologist Johannes Oduor was present and we have decided that the pathologist themselves inform Kenyans on the postmortem process." Toxicology is a test on the adverse effects of chemicals on living organisms. It also studies the harmful effects of chemical, biological and physical agents in biological systems that establishes the extent of damage in living organisms. Histology is the study of the microscopic anatomy of cells. Accurate diagnosis of diseases usually requires histopathological examination of cells. Meanwhile, the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) has designated six senior prosecutors to guide police investigating the death of the former Prime Minister's son who was subject of speculation he would launch his bid to be the heir of his father's political garb by running for a parliamentary seat in 2017.
DPP Keriako Tobiko announced he had seconded the prosecutors to help the team led by Nairobi County Criminal Investigations chief Nicholas Kamwende in unravelling the cause of the death. Acting director in the office of DPP Mr Nicholas Mutuku will lead the prosecutors. The DPP also directed that the investigations file be sent to his office. "I direct that at the conclusion of the said investigations, the respective inquiry file be submitted to me for perusal and appropriate directions," ordered Tobiko. The same team will also help investigations into the collapsed building in Huruma that has killed five. Tuesday, detectives handling the sudden death of Fidel said they had interrogated 12 people who were with him prior to his death. They include his friends who were drinking with him on Saturday night. Fidel, 41, was found dead in his bed on Sunday morning by his wife, Lwam Getachew Bekele. Tuesday, Raila's Karen home was busy with friends and relatives visiting to console the family. See also: Condolences: Muthee comforts Raila family Fidel had arrived home at around 2.30am Sunday after enjoying a night out with friends. He spent the night in the guest bedroom, apparently in order not to disturb his wife and young child who were sleeping in the matrimonial bedroom. Raila and his wife, Ida, were the first people to arrive at Fidel's residence at around 6am on Sunday after being called by Ms Bekele, officials said. Raila is said to have called a doctor, who confirmed that Fidel was dead. Oduor and Emily Rogena were among those who carried out preliminary examinations before the body was moved to Lee Funeral Home at 6.15pm. Among those present at the press briefing at Lee Funeral Home were Raila's brother, Oburu Odinga and four Orange Democratic Movement MPs - Jakoyo Midiwo, Peter Kaluma, James Nyikal and Tom Kajwang. Scene of crime officers were also around. A crowd had also gathered at the facility. Fidel will be buried