According to reports from the police, a suspect has been detained in connection with the investigation into the death of an LGBTQ+ rights activist, whose body was found stuffed into a metal trunk. According to accounts in the media, Edwin Chiloba, a 25-year-old fashion designer and model, was discovered dead on the side of the road earlier this week, around 40 kilometers (25 miles) outside of the town of Eldoret, which is located in the Rift Valley.
Peter Kimulwo, the chief of investigations at the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) office in Eldoret, stated that “we have a suspect in custody and we are examining his role in this murder.” In other words, they are looking into the suspect’s involvement in the murder. “We are holding him as a prime suspect because there are leads pointing to him and others, but all of them are subject to definitive investigations,” he said to the gathered media.
Kimulwo stated that the suspect was believed to have been a longstanding acquaintance of the victim and added that police were also hunting for people spotted loading a metal container into a car at Chiloba’s home. Chiloba’s home was the location of the incident.
An unnamed law enforcement official from Eldoret was quoted in the local media as saying, “He died a horrible death.” The Kenyan human rights commission has asked the Kenyan police force to “conduct quick investigations and make sure the killers are caught and sentenced.” In a statement, the organization expressed their concern by stating, “It is very troubling that we continue to watch an uptick in violence against LGBTQ+ Kenyans.” Every day, people in the LGBTQ+ community have their human rights infringed, yet those responsible for the violations seldom face any consequences.
In this primarily Christian society, members of the LGBTQ community are frequently subjected to verbal abuse and even more severe forms of violence. Homosexuality is looked down upon in Kenya and much of the rest of Africa. As a result, LGBT people often have to deal with discrimination or even persecution. When the British ruled Kenya as a colony, they made it illegal to be gay. Despite efforts to get rid of these laws, they have not been changed, and being gay is still a crime that can get you up to 14 years in jail.
On Twitter, the spokeswoman for the United States Department of State, Ned Price, expressed their deepest condolences to Edwin Chiloba’s family and friends. Chiloba was a prominent member of the LGBTQI+ community in Kenya. “We demand that every responsible party be held fully accountable for his death.”
The Kenya LGBTQ Feminist Forum, which is in western Kenya, where Chiloba lived, said that he used fashion “to deconstruct gender and campaign for the rights of the marginalized minority.”
“We want to know as a community, as Kenyans, what happened to Edwin, why he was murdered, and who dropped his corpse at the place,” Becky Mududa, the director of programs for the organization, said. The murder of Chiloba comes following the discovery of the body of another LGBTQ activist who had been slain in April last year.