At Silvia’s House: the Number 1 Suspect Knows too Much and Risks Being Killed

From our Special Correspondent
Massimo A. Alberizzi
Chakama and Malindi, 2 august 2019

Without a doubt, the kidnappers were looking for Silvia and she alone. When they approached the building where her room was, they asked me if there was Silvia and where she was. I pointed to door number 7. Then they were looking for my friend. ” This is explained by Ronald, a boy who knew the young Milanese woman well. His story is corroborated by the village chief, Mac Donald Ngowa Mwaringa, who confirms and adds: “Someone must have asked the men of the commando to take Silvia away. This someone must also have provided the money to organize the operation “.

The rundown little room where the young Milanese girl lived is a cell three meters wide by four long: two bunk beds, with rather battered mattresses, without electricity, only a bulb with dim light thanks to solar energy. I leave the description of the toilet to the imagination of readers. Those who choose to critique her should come and live here for a month, as Silvia did, with the idea of helping others.

Few people in Chakama know the three suspects, Moses Luari Chende, Abdulla Gababa Wari (the hearings concerning them were celebrated on 29 and 30 July and the next is scheduled for 21 August) and Ibrahim Adan Omar (who will be tried on 19 August). Only the first is a little better known because he lived with a girl from the village, Elisabeth Kasena, and then on the 17 and 18 November, two days before the abduction, he slept in a guest house opposite Silvia’s house. Moses is on the loose because he paid a bail of 25 thousand euros, a huge sum in these parts. According to the village chief, “now he risks being killed by those who ordered the kidnapping. He knows too much and knows the principals. If they kill him he will take his secret to the grave. How did he pay the bail? “Mac Donald asks.
A visit to the Malindi court allows you to find out how he managed to pay. Two people who claim to be the uncle and grandfather of Moses pledged many plots of land to account for bail.
The first is named Charles Kazungu Ngala and claims to earn 60,000 shillings (520 euros) a year, the second George Karisa Kitsao, again according to the documents we can see, earns 1,048 euros a year. Each of the two undertakes to go to prison if their protégé does not appear in court for the trial and each of them responds for $ 25,000. In addition, George Kitsao is from Marafa, the same village as Francis Kalama, the Anglican pastor whom Silvia had reported to the police for pedophilia. Simple coincidence?

“We are shocked” – explain two friends who know Moses well -. “His parents are very poor, at the limits of survival “. According to what emerged during the two hearings of the trial, the accused got to Chakama through purchase of two motercycles for 40 thousand and 35 thousand shillings, respectively 350 and 300 euros.

During the inspection at the Malindi police station, a disconcerting detail emerges. On November 21st, the day after the abduction of Silvia, the KWS (Kenya Wildlife Service) rangers had identified the place where the 23-year-old Milanese was held captive. But for fear that with the few weapons supplied they would not have been able to counter the bandits, THEY were given the order to stop waiting for the police. Meanwhile, gang and hostage have moved away, losing track.

The cover of the file documents of Silvia Romano casa

At least two other disturbing facts emerge from the trial paperwork. The police report warns of the consequences caused by the release on bail of the two suspects, who could escape justice. And then, among the charges, the organization of the kidnapping to force the Italian embassy to pay a ransom “as an explicit condition for the release of the girl”. Detail of the ransom request are unpublished.

Finally – perhaps the the fruit of the imagination of those who put it into circulation- the news that the suspects confessed and collaborated with justice. The court was categorical: “They declared themselves innocent and unaware of everything”.

Massimo A. Alberizzi
massimo.alberizzi@gmail.com
twitter @malberizzi

with contribution of
Hillary Duenas
hillary.duenas@gmail.com

 

Corrispondente dall'Africa, dove ho visitato quasi tutti i Paesi