Susan Wangui – A Criminal’s Mother Confession

Susan Wangui, the mother of 19 year old Derrick Ndung’u narrates how her son was living a life of crime. Derrick was killed by a mob after being thoroughly beaten in Komarock.

Susan said that she had ensured that Derrick studied well. He was able to finish form four in high school. After school, he was taken to driving lessons, which he finished successfully. Susan then asked whether she can put up a general shop for him, he refused. She then asked whether she can set up an electronics shop for him, that too he refused. The other offer was to join her aunt who brings charcoal from Busia to sell in Nairobi, again he refused.

The other option Susan says was to employ him in one of her constructions sites. Apparently she has hired many workers engaged in different building activities. For this, Derrick said that the job was too hard for him.

Susan Wangui also narrates how one time, she got a report that her son had stolen from someone. Susan herself took the initiative to get Derrick arrested. He was arrested and kept in jail. After three months, relatives pushed her to get him out. Susan agreed and arranged for his release, which required a bond of Kshs 500,000.

After he got out of jail, Susan again told him that she will arrange a job for him, he refused. Derrick went back to stealing.

Susan says that she knows that her son is a thief, and she can’t deny it or plead his case. Apparently when Derrick got arrested it was not his first time. She says that she has received many cases of her son stealing phones.

Derrick was a renowned phone snatcher. The Maili Saba bridge was one of his most popular spots.

Also see Nairobi Crime Research Center

Susan had given him many warnings, even using a popular Swahili proverb which in English translates to ‘If you don’t listen to your mother, you will die’. She is pleading with other people engaged in these activities to stop immediately, or they will end up like Derrick. Specifically she is cautioning close friends of Derrick who used to hang out with him. The best thing to do according to Susan is to do the work God has arranged for you.

In this particular night, Susan Wangui says that she was with Derrick in her house. Derrick received a phone call and told her that he is being called by his girlfriend. He was doing some work in the house but insisted on leaving immediately. After about an hour, Susan was called and told that her son was being beaten by a mob. She rushed there and met boda boda riders who informed her that Derrick and his friends had snatched a phone belonging to a lady who sells eggs.

Susan says that Derrick and his friends usually say that they sell the stolen items to a man known as ‘broker’. She recalls how when she got him arrested, he said that the phone he had stolen was with ‘broker’. Susan also said that the when the stolen phone was called, a name ‘Mso’ would appear on screen. 

Derrick finished high school in 2018. He never used to engage in any type of robbery while in school. After finishing high school, he was a nice for a while but things changed after one year. Susan Wangui says that it was the influence of other young men in town. They used to consume a type of marijuana knows as shash, which apparently made them not to care about anything. That is how their robbery activities started.

It is because of these illegal activities that led Derrick to move out of his mother’s house, because he knew that she would not tolerate his behaviors.

By Mike Obiero

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