An emotional Tabitha Karanja on Tuesday, March 9, took the stand to testify in the inquest of her daughter’s death at Milimani Law Courts in Nairobi.
Tabitha, who is the founder of Keroche Breweries, accused Omar Lali of financially preying on her late daughter, Tecra Muigai.
Testifying in court, Tabitha asked God to avenge her daughter’s death, saying that Tecra worked hard only to share her money with an old man who should have otherwise been providing for her.
Tabitha read out to the court her late daughter’s bank statement in which she transferred over Ksh1 million to Omar Lali within a period of five months.
“He was after my daughter’s hard-earned income and when she realized that she could not give him money anymore, he killed her,” Tabitha told the court.
She read to the court details of the bank transfers including the date and amount when her daughter transferred the huge sums of money to Lali.
Police summon man over death of Keroche CEO’s daughter Tecra
On August 19, 2019, Tecra transferred Ksh150,000 to Lali and moved a similar amount on the next day.
Eight days later, on August 28, Tecra moved another Ksh150,000 to Lali, Tabitha revealed in court.
After a three-week lull, Tecra again moved Ksh100,000 on October 18, then another Ksh100,000 on November 1.
Two weeks later, Tecra doubled the amount sent to Lali and transferred Ksh200,000 on November 13, 2019.
In the following month, Tabitha told the court that her daughter moved another Ksh100,000 to her lover.
In 2020, however, the amounts that Tecra moved to Lali decreased. In March 2020, Tecra sent Lali Ksh60,000 on the 3rd and Ksh80,000 on the 13th day of the month.
Tabitha also told the court that police found unsigned bank slips in the Lamu house Tecra shared with Lali whereby she had transferred money to him.
The Kericho Breweries founder revealed to Magistrate Zainabu Abdul that when her daughter shared with her a photograph of her boyfriend on WhatsApp, she was shell-shocked.
“I told her that she had send the wrong photo [because] the guy was too old for her,” Tabitha confessed.
But Tecra wrote back, insisting that the old man in the photograph was indeed her boyfriend.
“She told me, No, he is the one,” said Tabitha.
She narrated how she tried unsuccessfully to persuade and convince her daughter to stop dating Lali.
“At some point, she told us to stop [discussing] that topic,” said Tabitha.
Tecra loved travelling, Tabitha said, and she was in Lamu for holiday where she was stuck because of the Covid-19 lockdown.
“I told her to use public means but due to the scare, we waited after one lockdown after another. She was scared of travelling by public means,” Tabitha said.
Tecra, her mother revealed, had revealed that she was having relationship problems but always went back to Lali despite being advised to leave him.
“When your child is over 30, there is very little you can do,” she said.
She said the day Tecra died, she found Karanja, her husband, talking to someone on the phone.
“I heard him say, ‘she is in hospital’, so I asked him, ‘who is in the hospital?’” she said.
Later, she found out it was Lali who was speaking with her husband, informing him that Tecra was in hospital and that she had been induced to sleep because of pain.
“It was not true what Omar was alleging. The injuries were severe so we reported to the police. The doctor told us that if it was a fall, there would have been scars in other parts of the body. She had two cracks on the head,” explained Tabitha.
She told the court that Lali lied that Tecra was drunk but the doctors’ report revealed that she had not consumed alcohol.