Kalenjin singer Dianah Chelele was with husband on the eve of her death- Witness
Posted by African Press International on May 17, 2016
By Anthony Gitonga Thursday, May 12th 2016 at 08:59. Standard news Kenya.
Witnesses told the court the her marriage was on the rocks Photo:Courtesy
Claims of infidelity and disputes over finances had strained the marriage of slain musician Diana Chemutai ‘Chelele’, a court heard yesterday.
This emerged as the trial of Erick Makau Musila, who is accused of murdering his estranged wife, opened before Naivasha High Court Judge Christine Meoli.
Chelele’s mutilated body was discovered at her home in Bomet two days after her disappearance on January 7.
Witnesses told the court the couple’s marriage was on the rocks, with constant fights that saw the husband at one point take away their two children. The court also heard the couple kept breaking up and reconciling, only for Chelele’s body to be discovered at her home in Kapkwen, Bomet County.
According to Damaris Chepkemoi, a close friend of Chelele, the musician was infuriated when she realised her husband was unfaithful.
“The two were also involved in a fight after Chelele found out that the accused had an affair,” Chepkemoi told the court.
She said Musila at one time took Sh20,000 from Chelele after they had fought. “He also collected all household goods and later left with their two children,” she added.
A second witness, Ronald Cheruyot, who was also Chelele’s friend, told the court how the musician confided in him over her estranged relationship. He said at the time, the accused went to Chelele’s home, collected all her personal effects and left with their children.
Rita Chepng’eno, who is Chelele’s aunt, told the court the couple had lived for over seven years as husband and wife. “Days before she was found murdered, the accused bought her a new mobile phone and a line, which they would use to communicate secretly,” she said.
The court heard Chelele’s estranged husband was seen with her a day before she disappeared. Chelele’s body was discovered in her house two days later.
Musila, whose case was transferred from the High Court in Kericho for his safety has denied murdering Chelele.
Gladys Chepkemoi, a friend to Chelele, said Musila was seen walking with Chelele to a guest house in Bomet the night before she disappeared. Chepkemoi said she found the duo speaking by the roadside.
She said that upon spotting the two when she was going home at around midnight, she told a motorcycle operator to stop so she could find out what was going on.
“Chelele and Musila were joined by a third person and they all went into a nearby guest house, only for me to learn the following day that she was missing,” she told the court.
Another witness, Rita Chepng’eno, who is also an aunt to Chelele, said she spotted Musila on the same road at around 3am.
She said a taxi driver, who was ferrying her home, refused to stop and give Musila a lift, claiming the area was dangerous.
“I immediately tried calling Chelele to ask if all was well as I had seen her husband all alone on the road but she could not be reached on phone,” she said.
Chepng’eno told the court that for the next two days, they made efforts to get in touch with the musician to no avail.
Chepkemoi said she was with Chelele a day before she went missing. “She was on the phone all the time and at one time, she left the house, saying she was meeting someone and that was the last time I saw her alive,” she said.
Hearing continues on July 5 and 6.