Julius Gitau, the Thika businessman, who resurfaced yesterday after disappearing for over two months, now claims that he was being held hostage for the entire period.
Gitau, a well-known wholesale trader in Thika town, went missing on September 21. A ‘suicide note’ was found on his vehicle’s dashboard.
The 44-year-old millionaire popularly known as Gitau wa Mali told the police that he was freed on Saturday by his abductors.
He told the police, who have been looking for him for 11 weeks now, that he was being held at Kamwangi town in Gatundu North constituency adding that he came to know of the place only after his release.
After securing his freedom on Saturday, Gitau said, he spent the night at the house of his third wife Selina Nelly.
Detectives from the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) said they picked Gitau’s mobile phone signals as he was talking to his wife.
The detectives then went to Nelly’s house where they found the businessman and directed him to present himself to DCI offices in Gatanga yesterday.
According to the police, Gitau claimed that on the day he went missing he was abducted by gun-wielding men near Kenya Revenue Authority offices in Thika around 10am while on his way to a local gym.
“Accompanied by my third wife, who is a police officer in Thika, I reported to my shop in the heart of the town and delivered a parcel to my messenger around 7am,” he said.
He then left for the gym but was abducted and lost consciousness after being forced to have a soda.
When he regained consciousness, he found himself in a big building with a hall, a place where he spent 11 weeks serving as a domestic worker.
“I was made to wash clothes and utensils for the tenants. Once in a while, I was ordered to clean the compound,” Gitau’s statement to the police says.
He claimed that he could not identify the owners of the building or understand his disappearance because he was restricted to servant quarters.
Gitau could not also explain the motive of his abduction. His family says no one called to demand a ransom.
Gitau said that when he was released on Saturday, he was handed over to two heavily built around 4am. The men escorted him out of the compound.
“We walked for hours before entering a forest. The men then told me to continue walking and never look back,” he said.
“I later found myself on a dusty road. I was lucky because a boda boda appeared almost immediately.”
The boda boda operator offered him some money to board a matatu to his third wife’s house. He also used the rider’s phone to call her.
Officers handling the matter told Nation that Gitau’s story is not believable. They said the tycoon’s account of what transpired would be reviewed “with all the expertise and technology available”.
Since Gitau went missing, his businesses have remained shut with his three wives fighting over who should manage them.