NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 23 – Malindi Law Courts held a virtual session Monday, via a Skype video conferencing facility to expedite the determination of matters following the coronavirus lockdown.
The measures are being implemented in line with a directive by the Ministry of Health which has discouraged gathering or any form of meetings, after confirming 15 coronavirus cases.
Chief Magistrate Dr Julie Aseko presided over the proceedings in an exercise conducted in conjunction with Malindi GK prisons.
The session saw 157 matters handled by the court.
In Taita Taveta, Voi High Court Presiding Judge Farah Amin processed 24 files from Wundanyi Magistrate’s Court and issued orders for the release of 23 petty offenders from Wundanyi GK Prison, as part of efforts to decongest prison facilities and prevent the spread of COVID-19.
All other courts in the country have put up measures, such as hearing matters at the customer care centres established at the courts to maintain the recommended social distance so as to curb the spread of the virus.
In Nairobi, some cases have been held in an open court session, with the latest case being that of controversial blogger Robert Alai who was charged at the Milimani Law courts for posting misinformation on social media over coronavirus.
He was freed on a Sh50,000 cash bail.
Courts have adopted measures outlined by Chief Justice David Maraga, including filing cases electronically.
Maraga said that courts will only handle certificates of urgency and taking plea for serious offence.
He said judges in all the stations will review deserving cases already identified by prison authorities and issue appropriate revision orders so as to decongest the prisons.