Kiambu County Governor William Kabogo. FILE PHOTOKiambu County Governor William Kabogo. FILE PHOTO
By RICHARD MUNGUTI

A court on Friday cleared Kiambu County Governor William Kabogo of charges of ethnic incitement.

The acquittal has saved Mr Kabogo of a jail term of up to five years or a fine of Sh5 million had he been found guilty of the offence.

In her ruling, Senior Principal Magistrate, Martha Mutuku, said the evidence presented before her did not establish a case against the governor and was not enough to warrant the court place him on his defence.

The magistrate had been impressed upon by defence lawyers Mansur Issa and Edward Oonge to discharge the accused for no case to answer since the prosecution did not put forth any testimony showing the particular community that was affected by the alleged utterances.

In her ruling, Ms Mutuku said the prosecution did not call the maker of video clip that was aired by two TV stations on November 25, 2015 where Mr Kabogo was quoted as having uttered the inciting statements.

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She also added that the original raw copy of the video was not produced in court for purposes of establishing its authenticity.

The magistrate noted that in the absence of the original footage, it was difficult to prove the alleged words.

The court said the version of the edited video tendered in evidence was tailored to suit the news aspect of the two TV broadcasters.

She said the video footage testimony which was key to the case was wanting as its author was not known.

“A case has therefore not been established and I acquit him under Section 215 of the criminal procedure code,” Ms Mutuku ruled.