Athletes based in Nyahururu urged well-wishers to help them bring home the body of their colleague Cynthia Wanjiru Mbaire, who has been detained in Japan due to a Ksh1.3 million hospital bill.
Speaking to the press on Tuesday, April 25, the athletes noted that they were not in a position to raise the hospital bill as well as transportation costs to fly her body back.
Mbaire reportedly passed away after a long illness while based in the Asian country.
“We are very sad to have lost one of our colleagues who was based in Japan. We got reports that she was sick for a long time and perished while still in Japan.
“We are supposed to bring her body back home but we are not in a position to do so due to financial challenges. So we request the national government and even well-wishers to help us bring Wanjiku’s body home,” one of the athletes appealed.
Another athlete who was in attendance added that the group had formed a WhatsApp group to raise funds for her burial.
“As athletes based in Nyahururu, we have tried every means possible including opening a WhatsApp group to raise the required Ksh1.3 million but our efforts have been futile,” he stated.
Wanjiru, who hails from Njoro, Nakuru County, was based in Chiba Prefecture, an urban centre located in the Eastern part of Tokyo - Japan’s capital city.
She was 20 years old at the time of her demise.
Most of the athletic talents from the central region, particularly Nyahururu, have made Japan their home over the years.
Some of the star runners who pitched their training camps there in the past few decades include the late Samuel Wanjiru and the 2022 World Athletics Championships silver medalist Stanley Waithaka Mburu.
Samuel, who passed away in 2011 under unclear circumstances, had also made a name for himself while living in the Asian nation.
He bagged the Fukuoka and Chiba International Cross Country titles in 2003 and 2004 respectively.