Five children and a woman perished in a fire at Matanya trading centre, Laikipia Central, on Tuesday night.
Area deputy county commissioner Henry Ochako said the woman, Beatrice Wambui, arrived home drunk at midnight and lit a candle.
The candle started the fire that razed Wambui’s wooden room, killing her and her three children. The fire spread to the next wooden room and killed two more sleeping children. Wambui’s children were Agnes Wangui, seven, Joseph Mwangi, six, and one-and-a-half-year-old Faith Wanjiru.
“It is unfortunate that lives were lost because of alcohol. The other woman had left her two children in the house and locked it from the outside,” Ochako said at the scene.
Dickson Mwangi, seven, and John Muturi, six, were Jane Muthoni’s sons. Six rooms were razed, including a posho mill, a clothes store and a hotel.