Police launch probe after gambler kills himself

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By GEORGE SAYAGIE
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A businessman committed suicide in Narok town after he reportedly lost money through gambling and drinking.

Mr Joseph Kariuki, a father of two was found hanging behind his business premises at Loita House in the town Wednesday morning.

Narok police boss Philip Kipkurui said Mr Kariuki owned a clothes shop and a music store.

“We are still investigating if the man was involved in betting as people tell us, and it is only after we get proper details that we may make that conclusion,” said Mr Kipkurui.

According to Mr James Gitonga, a businessman, Mr Kariuki had in January 2015 attempted suicide by drinking a pesticide.

Mr Gitonga said he knew Mr Kariuki well. He said the businessman had told him he was frustrated following turbulent times in his two businesses and he had become an addict of football betting and drinking.

“I left him yesterday (Tuesday) evening as he was betting but I’ve just heard that he lost Sh100,000. This is, however, subject to confirmation since he did not leave a suicide note,” said Mr Gitonga.

Another friend, Mr Kennedy Wairia, who interacted with him on Tuesday, said he was drunk that evening and he seemed disturbed. Mr Kariuki had developed chronic ulcers after he lost all his stock to flash floods that hit Narok in 2014, said Mr Wairia.

“He had been low from that time, and engaged in heavy drinking and gambling,” said Mr Wairia.

Youth in the town have become addicted to sports betting which is driven by a bid to make quick cash. And, although some have had their living standards improve after winning good money through betting, others are still struggling, awaiting their luck. Bar owners have been reporting good business due to the many revellers who flock their joints to follow soccer matches on the big screens.

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