More than 200 bodies have been recovered from a mass grave in Kenya belonging to a starvation cult that believed salvation would come through starvation.
Authorities were made aware of the mass graves in April located on an 800-acre property within the Shakahola forest in eastern Kenya. That property belongs to leader of the Good News International Church, Paul Mackenzie Nthege, who is alleged to teach the salvation through starvation doctrine.
While authorities have recovered over 200 bodies so far, there could be hundreds more as 610 people have been reported missing in connection with the cult.
Authorities also discovered individuals who were still alive but were "too weak to walk" because of their starvation.
While authorities are busy digging up hundreds of bodies, Nthege and his wife as well as dozens of other suspects have been arrested and are set to appear in court in the coming weeks.
To make this horrific situation more disturbing, autopsies have found that aside from starvation, many victims died of strangulation, suffocation and injuries sustained from blunt objects.
So not only was Nthege allegedly pushing people to starve themselves to death. There is now a possibility that he and his associates were killing people, possibly those who attempted to expose Nthege and the cult.
Coast Regional Commissioner Rhoda Onyancha explained that the cult had an “enforcer gang” that was tasked with ensuring those who were starving didn't break their fast or escape the 800-acre property.
The existence of enforcers explains the victims who died of strangulation and injuries from blunt force trauma. The cult also allegedly wrapped starving children in blankets and then buried them, explaining the victims that died of suffocation.
Kenya has been busy cracking down on disturbing cults like Nthege's. The East African nation is very religious but the current government is working to weed out those who would hurt people and commit other heinous acts.
Paul Mackenzie Nthege has a disturbing history and some of his previous statements give a chilling look into the history behind this tragedy. Nthege was quoted saying, "There are people who don't even want to preach [about] Jesus. They say their children are crying because they are hungry, let them die. Is there a problem there?"
Nthege also discouraged his congregation from seeking education or the help of doctors as they "serve a different God."
There is no doubt Nthege is a deranged individual but it will be up to Kenyan authorities to put together a case and actually discover the role that he played in the hundreds of dead Kenyans that have been found.
At least families of the victims are getting some form of closure with the discovery of the mass graves. Hopefully, those responsible will be brought to justice and the victims will get justice for this atrocity.