It’s been nearly a week since Stephen Mumbo died of an apparent suicide after falling from PwC’s 17th-floor Delta Towers offices in Nairobi, Kenya, to a second-floor balcony of the building, and local authorities are still investigating why he took his own life.
Reports out of Kenya surfaced earlier this week that Mumbo, an assistant manager of executory and forensics investigations at PwC Kenya, according to his LinkedIn profile, came to work as usual on the 12th floor of the building the morning of Oct. 12.
He seemed to be in good spirits and didn’t show signs of being upset.
Mumbo had made arrangements to work in a 17th-floor boardroom that day and was reportedly seen in the boardroom alone.
But what happened after that and before falling 15 stories to his death still remains a mystery.
Mumbo was pronounced dead on arrival at Aga Khan Hospital after succumbing to his injuries.
Some people on Twitter speculated that Mumbo committed suicide because he was having marital problems, while others believe he took his own life because he worked outrageously long hours and had no life outside of PwC.
The work environment at PwC killed Stephen Mumbo. The man was killed by an inconsiderate boss who doesn't value the life of employees. One time Stephen Mumbo stayed in office for 72 straight hours. Another time, 64 straight hours. Pay was good but no life beyond that. #KillerPwC
— Robert ALAI, HSC (@RobertAlai) October 12, 2018
But one report following his death said a worker at the building saw Mumbo “struggle to hold on to the window before screaming as he hurtled beneath,” prompting speculation that maybe he didn’t commit suicide and foul play was involved.
“There are very strong links that it was a suicide but this is just in theory,” said Kilimani OCPD Michael Muchiri.
“However it is still too early to make a conclusion but we are also looking at the prospect of whether there was some involvement,” he said.
After PwC Kenya released a statement on Twitter following Mumbo’s death, many people responded by criticizing the firm’s working conditions.
A friend who works with you cannot pick up his phone during working hours. If he does, he insist on getting back in the evening. Pathetic working environment!!
— Uhuru Must Go!! (@angelmikael5) October 12, 2018
Is it true that your company gives employees unrealistic targets and pressure them so much and could be a reason for such an incident??
— Horacebrian (@oyimbabrian) October 12, 2018
There has been a lot of complaints about your work culture, you need to give your employees better working conditions. No wonder you never retain 80% of the graduate trainees that you recruit.
— Victor Ooko (@victorooko) October 12, 2018
Others bashed the firm for not caring about the mental well-being of its employees.
Its about time companies invested in the mental wellness of their employees,
— Salim ™ (@salimkharl) October 12, 2018
Stop giving your employees stress and mke your counseling department if you have one effective and efficient. Nyi ni wajinga sana. It's a shame that he died at work and chances are high that it must be related to work. Care 4 employees too not profits alone. Rest in peace Mumbo
— Haroun Wamoto (@HarounWatakila) October 12, 2018
No doubt, it's unfortunate incident, but seems there was no good counseling session if any, no sane employee will wake up to work only to commit suicide at work place, all the problem boiled at the office and burned there.
— Keen Observer (@DavidKE2017) October 12, 2018
PwC Kenya has yet to respond to an email from Going Concern requesting comment.