2 in court for working as missionaries without permits
Two Philippian tourists who have been stranded in Kenya were charged with working as missionaries without permits after they were found volunteering at a children’s home in Kayole Estate in Nairobi.
They are Paul Mercado Fajardo and Anita Actub Lagunay who have been stranded in Nairobi since February.
The two were charged with failure to comply with conditions of a tourist visa.
They are accused of contravening Kenyan Citizenship and Immigrating Act after they were found working as missionaries at a children’s home in Kayole.
The two hold tourist visas but came on missionary duty and were volunteers at Children’s Joy Foundation.
They denied the charges before Makadara chief magistrate Heston Nyaga. They were freed on bail and bonds and hearing of their case will start on July 3.
Fajardo and Lagunay were arrested in February after differences with a person they were living with in Nyayo Estate in Embakasi.
Their lawyer Gilbert George said they were locked up at the Embakasi police station for a week and were released after he wrote to the National Police Service’s Internal Affairs Unit.
They were later arraigned before a court in February but were never charged.
The duo was arrested days before the expiry of their visas and expired while they were in custody.
The lawyer, who is offering them free legal services, said they are at the mercy of a well-wisher who is accommodating and feeding them because they have nothing.
“When they were arrested, there was a person who knew them and colluded with police to have them arrested so that they could be extorted after they differed, and they were extorted Sh200,000. That person had stolen their phones and was intercepted at the estate’s security gate and the phones recovered,” George said.
“Immediately they were picked up, this person went into the apartment he shared with them and carried away everything. They reported this incident to police and no action was taken thereafter.”