Prosecution wants Korogocho MCA detained for 7 days

By , K24 Digital
On Tue, 31 Jan, 2023 12:47 | 3 mins read
Korogocho MCA freed on Ksh100K bail
Korogocho MCA Absalom Odhiambo Onyango before Milimani Law Courts. PHOTO/Nancy Gitonga

Outspoken Korogocho Ward Representative Absalom Odhiambo Onyango, popularly known as Matakwey or Mobimba, was on Tuesday, January 31 arraigned at Milimani Law Courts over allegations of incitement to violence.

The Directorate of Public Prosecutions sought to have the suspect detained for seven days pending the conclusion of the investigations into the allegations of incitement to violence and disobedience of the law contrary to section 96 of the Penal Code Chapter 63 laws of Kenya.

"This court be pleased to issue custodial orders that Odhiambo be detained for seven days from today at Central Police Station to allow officer Mwita and an investigator with DCI and any another officer who may be appointed and authorized by the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI), complete investigations on a case of incitement to violence and disobedience of the law," the affidavit filed in court reads in part.

The officer wants to conduct a further probe on allegations that the MCA uttered words that are likely to cause violence or destabilize the nation.

The MCA is alleged to have uttered the alleged inciting words during a public address at Capitol Hill on January 25, 2023.

"Kwa siasa ya Taifa tunataka tutoke kwenda ikulu tutoe huyu mwizi, nataka tuingie town tufunge biashara, hakuna biashara itaendelea hii town ya Nairobi, ndio William Ruto (the President) aheshimu Raila Odinga (Azimio la Umoja leader). Lazima tufunge biashara hii town", the affidavit reads in part.

According to the DCI, preliminary investigations have revealed that the MCA has a habit of causing havoc in the nation through his followers both through public addresses and social media.

The police argue that they need seven days to retrieve any possible inciting, messages from his phone and record statements for the state to enhance evidence for the prosecution.

Further, the officer said the MCA should not be released on bail pending the conclusion of investigations, arguing that he is a flight risk.

"Based on the sensitivity of the matter if the suspect is released on bail at this point he will interfere with witnesses. We are seeking these orders knowing that the words uttered are a security threat, "the court heard.

The DCI intends to record statements from the witnesses who were present when Onyango uttered the alleged inciting words.

The MCA was arrested on Monday, January 30, after honouring summons by the National Cohesion and Integration Commission (NCIC).

He was later detained at Kibu Police station.

The defence lawyers led by Danstan Omari and Sam Nyaberi vehemently opposed the DCI application, saying there are no compelling reasons availed by the state to warrant further detention of the MCA.

"It will be a violation of his constitutional rights that the state is seeking to detain the MCA on allegations that there are other people he is working with. He holds a high office being an MCA. He can not run away from the wheels of Justice," lawyer Nyaberi stated.

On his side, Omari stated that the arrest and the intended prosecution of the MCA are politically instigated.

"Today marks the first day when the current regime has abused its power. We urged the court to resist the invitation to be used by the politician for politics," Omari stated.

"We call up the judiciary to be firm. We urged this court to be independent and to be fair. Let us not use the court to settle political scores. We urge the court to therefore release the suspect unconditionally," Omari stated.

On the allegation that he is a flight risk, the lawyers told the court that their client is a decorated MCA who has an office and a fixed abode and can also be traced at Nairobi County Assembly.

The allegations that he is working with other people out there, the defence team said the prosecution is on a fishing expedition.

Magistrate Gilbert Shikwe is expected to rule on the DCI application.