somber mood engulfed kogony village, Kisumu County as Caleb Otieno, the man who melted to ashes in a Thika steel plant, laid to rest
Otieno was tasked with feeding metal pieces through a rolling mill into a blazing furnace.
While he threw some of the pieces in, on Friday, March 25, his gloves got stuck on the metals, making the mills pull him onto the machine that crushed him into pieces before dropping him into the furnace.
His body then liquefied and got mixed up with the melted steel, leaving only countable bone particles at its base.
According to Thika sub-county DCIO Joseph Thuvi visited the scene and collected ashes and particles that seemed like pieces of bones from the furnace.
The DCIO said they were treating the matter as a normal accident at a place of work.
The family is said to have been given a monthly stipend of Sh7,000 for five years in compensation by the company.
According to the family, the sum would be a third of the deceased’s salary paid for the five years he had worked in the company.
Caleb used to earn a monthly salary of KSh 21,000, a third of it in five years accumulating to KSh 420,000.
“The company offered me KSh 100,000, and when I asked them about the compensation, the HR manager told me that they would compensate me with a third of KSh 21,000 that my son was earning per month for the five years he worked as a permanent employee. That is the last thing I heard from the company. ‘ ‘
”They told me this would translate to KSh 7,000 per month. When my other son, John Agwambo, did the calculations, we realised the compensation would be KSh 420,000 for all the five years he worked there as a permanent employee, yet it is safety negligence at the company that made my son die. We felt ridiculed and denied justice,” said Martin Oraro, the deceased’s father.