Police are on the spot for roughing up members of the press covering the bail hearing of Embakasi East Member of Parliament Paul Ongili, better known as Babu Owino, at Milimani Law Courts on Friday, July 21, 2023.
In a video seen by K24 Digital, a contingent of police officers armed to the teeth is seen roughing up journalists outside the court despite identifying themselves as the press, moments before Babu Owino and six other accused persons were granted bail.
The members of the fourth estate are heard pleading with the officers to allow them to perform their duties in vain.
One of the police officers then pushes away Standard journalist Collins Kweyu, making him fall down on the concrete ground with a thud while holding his camera.
Babu Owino was presented in court alongside self-declared Bunge la Mwananchi President Calvin Okoth Otieno alias Gaucho and five others.
The suspects, charged with conspiring to commit subversive activities over their alleged role in planning ongoing anti-government protests, were released on Ksh100,000 cash bail each on Friday.
Milimani Chief Magistrate Lukas Onyina said there were no compelling reasons to deny the suspects bail.
“A holistic look at the affidavit does not disclose compelling reasons to deny the accused persons bond, each of the accused persons is granted bond of Sh200,000 with an alternative cash bail of Sh100,000,” the magistrate ruled.
The other five suspects are Tom Odondo, Michael Otieno, Pascal Ouma, Kevin Wambo and Willys Owino.
According to the prosecution, the suspects committed the offence on dates between July 7 and 23, 2023 with others who were not in court within Nairobi County.
The prosecution had opposed the suspects' release on bail, saying they were a threat to national security.