A promise to remember: Tributes to Emmanuel Mutura Ndwiga and Benson Njiru Ndwiga



In the journey of life, we encounter individuals who radiate an extraordinary light, leaving a profound impact on our hearts and inspiring us to reach for greater heights. Yet, what happens when this luminous presence is tragically and unjustly extinguished, leaving us with a void that can never be filled? Today, we, the students of Kabarak University School of Law, gather to pay homage to Emmanuel Mutura Ndwiga and Benson Njiru Ndwiga, whose lives were tragically cut short on 1 August 2021 by the hands of the police in Kianjokoma, Embu County. Through this tribute, we carry their light in our memories and raise a clarion call to never forget, and to seek justice for the lives lost.

The first series of this tribute comprises heartfelt reminiscences shared by Carol Musembi, Maria Elizabeth and a poignant poem by Fidel Kibwana. Together, let us honor the memories of these bright souls and cherish the impact they made on our lives. May their light continue to shine in our hearts, guiding us to uphold justice and hope in a world that deeply mourns their absence.

Emmanuel Mutura: A true friend and mentor

By Carol Musembi

Joining university is as terrifying as it is exciting, especially if your friend-making skills are as wanting as mine. Emmanuel Mutura was the first friend I ever made in Kabarak University. I vividly recall the first conversation I had with him, where I discovered that he wished to specialize on matters of children and the law. Mutura was charismatic and easygoing, with a fervent passion about law that seemed daunting to me at the time. As some law students are in their first year, I was putting just enough effort to ensure I attained the minimum grade, yet here was a student so focused in his studies I was intimidated. Little did I know that I would strike a friendship that would greatly benefit me and make me rethink my life in law school.

Everyone who knew Mutura will tell you he was quiet, always listening, discerning, absorbing information and speaking only when he deemed it necessary to do so. He was a great friend, always encouraging you to read read and read some more. 'Knowledge never killed anyone', was always his response to our incessant complaining that he was doing too much. With him I developed a reading culture I still maintain to this day, which has made my life in law school much easier. His friendship taught me a lot, and I will share with you two things;

           Being all-in.

Mutura could not fathom the idea that I had no idea about what I was doing in law school. He even encouraged me to change courses many times. I am aware I was not the only one with one foot in and one foot out in law school. He sat me down many times and lectured me on the importance of being all in in everything I undertook. There isn't anything half-hearted about success. You have to work for it and mean it. Here I am two years later with goals and ambitions he would be proud of, with all the intentions of working towards them.

         Believe in yourself.

Emmanuel was the most self-assured person I knew. He had an air of confidence that many mistook for arrogance. Being successful requires you to be sure about yourself. You have to be your biggest cheerleader. It did not faze him when he got something wrong; 'Mistakes are a learning opportunity' as he would always remind us.

His death taught me one important lesson. Live everyday as if it were your last. Don't do things just for the sake of doing them. This life is too short to live it unenthused. He will be missed greatly.

Forever Cherished: A Tribute to Mutura (Masho)

By Maria Elizabeth

Time does fly doesn't it?

To be honest, the void you left behind is gradually healing with time. Sometimes I wonder if that's a good thing, or if you will fade in my memories with time. As scary as the thought is, you're forever in my heart, and I mean it. Down from our first meeting...to the last, I can't remember a time I never smiled or laughed in between our interactions. In you I found and made a friend, someone I could trust to share with both my ups and downs. Never did you judge or fail to give me a shoulder to lean on, which made you priceless. I might have realised it way too late but you were and still are, someone I whole heartedly cherish.

Then again, it was all too sudden. The unforeseen news which I first took as a bad joke came crashing, almost reaping my soul apart. I wished, no, I hoped it was just a bad dream and soon I would wake up to another reality. Then again, I couldn't feign ignorance, just couldn't. I could go on and on about how I found you unique in so many ways, but sadly I can't find enough words to describe you. Every time you cross my mind I always hope you're in a better place, and that when we meet again (which we will), we'll have the best re-union I could ever ask for.

You are both my sad and happy memories, someone I'll forever cherish. For now, take care of yourself, and I will do the same from my end.

Till we meet again Masho.

Guiding Light: A Tribute to Emmanuel Mutura Ndwiga and Benson Njiru Ndwiga

By Fidel Kibwana

In the halls of Kabarak, once walked a soul so bright,

Emmanuel Mutura, a spirit of pure light.

A short, brown man, with an afro's pride,

His spirit free, like the wind, would glide,

A law student, a friend,

To classmates he'd affectionately say,

BUDAA" with a smile, in a special way.

In Kianjokoma, Embu County, tears fell like rain,

Life unjustly taken, causing heartache and pain.

Emmanuel's and Benson's memory forever etched in our hearts,

A symbol of hope, though his life was torn 'into parts'.

Police brutality, a heart-wrenching plight,

Innocent lives lost, fading out of sight,

In the quest for peace, we must unite,

To end this darkness and make things right.

Let's remember Emmanuel, his smile so bright,

In unity, let's stand, with all our might,

For justice and love, our voices we raise,

To honor our dear friend, in countless ways.

Together we'll strive, with hearts aligned,

To bring an end to the pain, we'll find,

In memory of Emmanuel Mutura, so dear,

May their spirit guide us, never to fear.

Peace we seek, in this world we share,

Remembering Emmanuel, showing we care,

Let's vow to create a future that's just,

For him, for all, in whom we place our trust. 

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