, NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 6 – Former Nairobi Mayor George Aladwa on Friday denied inciting the residents of the Kibera slum to violence on Mashujaa Day.
He was then released on a bond of Sh3 million with the alternative of paying a Sh500,000 cash bail.
The Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions had sought to have him denied bond citing an increase in incidents of political leaders making inflammatory statements.
Leonard Maingi from the Office of the DPP gave the example of Moses Kuria who he said went on to spread messages of hate after being released on bond for a similar charge.
He also cited remarks made by Kiambu Governor William Kabogo at the Thika Stadium on October 25 that, “If they want to take me to court,” for telling off opposition leaders Raila Odinga and Johnson Muthama, “I have the money to defend myself.”
Maingi therefore argued that setting stringent bond terms wasn’t enough to stem the tide of hate speech as politicians would always manage to raise the funds.
He said the best recourse was to deny them release on bond all together.
Aladwa’s lawyers took issue with Maingi’s argument citing the legal provisions that guarantee accused persons the right to be released on reasonable bond terms except in exceptional circumstances.
Aladwa was charged after the Directorate of Criminal Investigations and the National Cohesion and Integration Commission authenticated a video in which Aladwa is seen calling Kibera residents to violence should the 2017 general elections be, “stolen,” from Odinga.
“My attention has been drawn to a video clip in which the above named person (Aladwa) is captured uttering the following words among others: ‘… 2017 imekaribia na sisi kama watu wa ODM tumebaki na risasi moja… this time round the outcome of the election ikiwa tumeshinda na watunyang’anye wacha kiumane… Raila ndio awe President lazima watu wakufe kiasi…’” the Director of Public Prosecutions Keriako Tobiko quoted in a letter to the Director of Criminal Investigations Ndegwa Muhoro.
Chief Magistrate Daniel Ogembo who summoned Aladwa to plead to the charge of incitement to violence, released Muthama on a Sh100,000 cash bail on a similar charge on October 13.
He released Political Scientist Mutahi Ngunyi on a Sh500,000 cash bail on a charge of incitement to ethnic contempt on October 10.
As in Muthama’s case, lawyer Harun Ndubi told Capital FM News that they plan to challenge the legality of the section of the Penal Code, 96(a), which Aladwa is accused of contravening.
Ndubi argued that shifting the burden of proof to the accused contravenes the natural laws of justice.