On Wednesday, July 7, at 6 pm, renowned businessman Sidik Anwarali Sumra, 48, drove into Junju village to assess land he had intended to buy.
The land, 90 acres in total, was a top priority for him, as he sought to expand his dairy business. An acre in the area costs an average of Sh1 million.
He was not a stranger to residents, nor was James Kazungu Kafani, the land dealer who was waiting to show him around.
Successful dairy farm
Mr Sumra ran a successful dairy farm, Sumra Dairy, in Kikambala-Amkeni, Kilifi County.
On the fateful day, Mr Sumra and his driver Rahil Mohamed Kasmani had driven to Junju to meet Mr Kazungu.
Mr Kazungu was a land agent and had taken the two to view the parcel that Mr Sumra was interested in buying.
The two viewed the property, which is occupied by squatters.
The squatters knew Mr Sumra, police reports reviewed by the Nation show, but they turned against him and descended on the three with crude weapons, claiming that they had come to seize their (squatters’) land.
Junju resident Jimmy Chome said the three came to the village around 6pm in a grey car and parked it a few metres from where they later met their death.
“They came claiming that they were looking at their land. There seemed to be a misunderstanding at Miembeni after they were questioned and that is when villagers descended on them on claims that they were abductors who sell human body parts,” Mr Chome said.
Eyewitness accounts to the Nation reveal that they were lynched. After the murders, a boda boda rider tied the corpses to his motorcycle with ropes and dragged them to the main road, where the public wanted to burn their bodies but some in the crowd that had gathered to view the alleged kidnappers objected.
Within an hour, their lifeless bodies lay by the road, with their car, a grey Toyota Fielder (KCV 303M) burnt to a skeleton.
Now it has emerged that the vehicle was vandalised and Mr Sumra’s gun stolen even as security agencies try to solve the disturbing killings that have shocked the region.
Mr Sumra was no stranger to residents and Kilifi political leaders and administrators.
He rose to fame in August 2016 when his animals emerged winners in various categories during the Mombasa Agricultural Show attended by President Uhuru Kenyatta.
During the event, Mr Sumra entered his four cows in different categories of a competition.
He had a Boti, a six-year-old crossbreed of a pure Friesian cow and a pure brown Swiss bull, in the crossbreed category for large and small-scale farmers.
The Boti, weighing 450kg and his favourite animal, not only ended up being declared the winner in the two categories but was also declared the overall winner when it participated in the overall ‘Cow of the Show’ category.
And to cap the win, his three other animals won in their respective categories. His bull scooped the second position in the Friesian bull category while his cow took the second position in the Friesian cow category. Another of his cows took the third position in the Friesian cow category.
Dream come true
“It was a dream come true for my animals to win at the event. I could not believe that I was also the overall top dairy farmer as I was participating in the Mombasa show for the first time,” Mr Sumra said in an interview with Nation at the time.
It was due to this outstanding experience that President Kenyatta honoured him after he officially opened the ASK show.
The farmer said he had 400 animals in 2016, 150 of which were mature dairy cows while six were bulls, with the rest being in-calf heifers and calves. He kept his animals under the semi-zero grazing system.
His passion for dairy farming was hereditary, having inherited the business and farm from his great grandfather Sidik Sanjar, who he said started the farm in Mombasa in 1912
Some 17 years ago, the family relocated the enterprise to its current location in Kibarani, where they leased 200 acres.
He took over management of the business from his father Anwarali Mohamed eight years ago. The business was worth over Sh50 million and employed more than 70 workers by 2016.
The Sumras used to sell 80 per cent of their raw milk to consumers in Mombasa and its environs, where they made home deliveries.
Operating the business on a leased farm, he added, was an expensive undertaking, but he declined to reveal what he paid annually for the land.
When he toured the Junju land last week, the Nation understands, he had planned to acquire it and transfer his animals there and increase the herd.
This was never to be.
On Sunday, the family held prayers in Kibarani in his honour.
Source link : https://allafrica.com/stories/202107140808.html
Author : Nation
Publish date : 2021-07-14 12:20:06