Outspoken Kapseret MP Oscar Sudi has been charged with three criminal offences relating to offensive conduct and hate speech.
Sudi who virtually appeared before Nakuru Senior Principal Magistrate Lillian Arika faced two counts of hate speech and one of offensive conduct.
The first and second charges stated that on September 7, at an unknown place within the country, the legislator used threatening words through social media, namely YouTube, in uttering words that were likely to stir up ethnic hatred.
Sudi was further charged that on the same day and at unknown place within Kenya, he used abusive words through YouTube that were likely to breach peace.
However, the State did not charge him with Illegal possession of a firearm and ammunition, assaulting a police officer and resisting arrest and no reason was given.
When he was first presented before the Nakuru Chief Magistrate’s court, the prosecution said it was investigating him on five charges which included the latter three.
Sudi, who took plea at the Nakuru Central Police Station, denied committing the three offences preferred against him.
His team of lawyers led by Uasin Gishu woman representative, Gladys Boss Sholei and Isaac Terer, Hilary Sigei and Bernard Ng’etich among others asked Magistrate Arika to release their client on reasonable bond terms.
They asked for a Sh100,000 cash bail, saying their client will attend court when required to do so.
“The prosecution must provide compelling reasons warranting denial of the legislator’s release on bond,” said Ng’etich.
He said the MP has well known places of abode in Nairobi and Eldoret, adding that he has been heeding to police summons since the matter came up. “He is a distinguished member of the society and there is no danger of him being a flight risk,” said lawyer Ng’etich.
They also asked the court to allow the MP to delegate his court attendance during mentions because he was an MP and instead allow the lawyers to represent him in absentia.
Prosecutor Daniel Karuri said the prosecution was not opposed to Sudi’s release on bond but asked the court to retain the terms of the High Court.
On the issue of missing court sessions during mentions, Karuri said the MP was a citizen like any other and should promptly attend court.
Arika affirmed the bond terms as given by Justice Joel Ngugi and released him on a Sh500,000 cash bail with an alternative bond of Sh1 million.
She said the issue of whether the MP should or should not attend mention dates will be addressed before the trial court.
The matter will come up for mentioned for pre-conferencing on October 6, and the accused’s lawyers are at liberty to move the court for review on the suspects freedom to address political gatherings.
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