Kenya

Thiba Dam supervisor in racism storm flees Kenya

Thiba Dam supervisor in racism storm flees Kenya
  • Kirinyaga East police boss Mr Antony Wanjuu confirmed that the foreigner, who had been employed by Strabag construction firm, had disappeared.

  • Mr Wanjuu said the government will involve Interpol in bid to bring the man to face the law over allegations he mistreated workers at the construction site.

  • The firm's senior manager in Kenya, Mr James Karanja, said the suspect did not inform them that he was travelling back to his country.

An Austria national accused of racial discrimination and assaulting construction workers at the Sh20 billion Mwea Thiba dam project in Kirinyaga has fled the country under unclear circumstances.

The 47-year-old Hinteregger Jurgen secretly sneaked out of Kenya two days after he was questioned by officials from the Directorate of Criminal Investigations at Kianyaga Police Station.

Kirinyaga East police boss Mr Antony Wanjuu confirmed that the foreigner, who had been employed by Strabag construction firm, had disappeared.

"He was supposed to return on Monday for further interrogation but failed to do so and escaped to his country of origin. The company management has confirmed that the foreigner has left," said Mr Wanjuu.

INTERPOL

But Mr Wanjuu said the government will involve Interpol in bid to bring the man to face the law over allegations he mistreated workers at the construction site where he was a supervisor.

The Kirinyaga police boss warned the firm, Strabag Company, will be held responsible for the suspect’s escape.

"We had told the Management to ensure that the supervisor is brought back to the police station to answer to more questions but it did not heed to our instructions. Stern action may be taken against the Management," said Mr Wanjuu.

The firm's senior manager in Kenya, Mr James Karanja, said the suspect did not inform them that he was travelling back to his country.

"Mr Jurgen called and informed us that he is already back at his home country. We were shocked when we learnt that he is not within Kenya," he explained.

But the firm said since the suspect was not under arrest, they could not control his movements.

"The police took duplicates of his passport and other documents which they wanted to peruse to establish whether he is legally in Kenya and they were supposed to monitor him," added Engineer Karanja.

Workers described Mr Jurgen as a brutal and ruthless man.