This paints a picture for many inmates whose hopes, dreams and dignity were shattered the moment they stepped inside the prison walls.
In the case of Purity Kathure, her life took a dreadful turn when she was handed a life sentence at 16 years of age. She expressed her fears, worrying that she could have sealed her fate and written her final chapter with a mistake that led to her sentencing.
The woman, a mother of one, who is serving her sentence at Nyeri Women’s prison, is accused of murdering her father. She has currently served 13 years in prison.
Speaking to NjerainÄ©CitÅ©, she appealed to President Uhuru Kenyatta to grant her a Presidential pardon, noting that it would be the only way for her to see outside the prison walls.
“This sentence is for those who are accused of murder while at a young age. It’s until the day that the President will grant mercy and pardon me. Our Excellency Uhuru, if he’s touched on my plight, he can grant my release and I would be grateful,” the aggrieved prisoner stated.
While narrating her ordeal, she stated that she was roped into the differences between her parents. According to Kathure, she had heard her mother making plans through a phone call to end the life of her father.
At first, she couldn’t believe that the friction between the two had escalated to the point of her mother hiring a hitman to carry out such a heinous plot. Not knowing what to do, Kathure retreated to her boyfriend’s place in order to figure out her next course of action.
Two days later, she received a call from her brother, who sought to inquire what had happened. Fearing that the worst might have come to reality, she went and found a police car outside their compound, and then at that moment, it dawned on her.
“We had a rocky relationship between my father and me but I couldn’t wish any harm to happen to him. It’s so unfortunate that he died a gruesome murder,” she noted.
The family was informed by the police to be on standby as they conducted their investigations. At the time, Kathure began using a phone that she had found in the house, with permission from her mother.
Unknown to her, the phone was at the scene of the crime and was being tracked by detectives from the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI).
A few days later, the police tracked her to her boyfriend’s place and arrested both of them. Her mother was also apprehended by the sleuths as a key suspect.
In court, Kathure now claims, that her lawyer misled her by informing her to deny all the allegations, which at first, she took issue with but ended up complying.
Her alibi and testimony were, however, found to be false after evidence from a local telco revealed that the sim card was registered in her name. With the key evidence found her in possession, she ended up taking the fall for the murder.
“I wish I knew, I’d have been the one to take it to the police station and inform them that I had been given by my mother.”
To add to her woes, she had just given birth to her son, who was four months old at the time.
“My baby was four months old by the time I was being sentenced. Right now, he’s a teenager and almost at the same age I was when I was arrested,” she stated noting that her son is almost sitting his KCPE examinations.
“During visitation hours, he keeps crying, knowing that he won’t see his mother outside the walls. One day, he vowed to me that he would go to school, graduate, and be the one to get me out. You can imagine the pain,” a teary-eyed Kathure stated.