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University of Nairobi SONU chair, Adungosi dies a needless death in prison



Titus Adungosi -First SONU chair
Titus Adungosi -First SONU chair

It was in 1982 after the attempted coup when the government of KANU went round brutally plucking campus students from their classes and hostels and dumping them in Kamiti. Kamiti maximum prison cell block D turned to be a revolutionary campus. Sixty university students (Mwakdua wa Mwachofi, Ken Sagala, Evans Vitisia, dongo Ogony, Onyango CA, Jeff Mwangi Kwirikia, David Murathe, Ciira Wabere, Kirimaina, Ongele Opala, Richard Momoima Onyonka, Philip Murgor , Wahinya Boore , Thomas Mutus, JJ Ouma , Kibisu Kabatesi , Njuguna Mutonya, Francis Kinyua, Omondi Oludhe among many others) were in the Kamiti prison Block D which gained the name a “revolutionary campus”.

Among this was a unique figure, David Thumbi, a UON first year medical student who out of confusion and shock of the new campus life hanged himself to death as soon as president Moi spared him and other innocent campus minds. There are other students who died in prison due to unbearable conditions and torture, others committed suicide and others were assassinated in unclear circumstances.

One of those students who died in unclear circumstance was Titus Adungosi. Titus Adungosi was born in 1956 and was the fifth born in their family. He was the first SONU chair. Adungosi’s father the late Mzee Longinus Adungosi had three wives with a total of twenty children. His father was a farmer and grew banana which Titus Adungosi’s mother Marciliana Nyabole used to sell to pay their school fees. Apart from raising fee by selling banana she also used to make beer.

Titus’s death in prison still remains a mystery but we as campus students remember him, the first year medical student who hanged himself to death after being released from prison and others who died a needless death in prison. The death of these students reminds us that the oppressor will never be declared patriotic by subjecting democratic people to torture.

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One response

  1. Benson W Avatar
    Benson W

    I lived through those horrible years at UoN (Halls 1 &9) while pursuing my BA Pol Sci. We never fully unpacked our suitcases. I also had a small bag “on the ready” just in case Moi called for “Closing of Campus”.
    As tumultous as UoN life was, I think my best life was “Campus Life”. Julius Chacha, was my roomate in Hall One and a good friend. He was among a few students who owned cars on Campus (Left Hand Drive)
    Life was so exciting. Anything could happen on Campus anytime. Most relationships endure today. Most of my yearmates found their life-mates on Campus.
    If I had to do it over at UoN, I wouldnt change a thing
    Wandabwa, NJ USA

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