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Blogger Alai charged with undermining Uhuru

Blogger Robert Alai was on Wednesday charged in a Kiambu court with undermining President Uhuru Kenyatta in a post on Twitter.

Mr Alai was freed on bond and warned by the magistrate not post on Facebook, Twitter, Whatsapp or any other publication any content that is similar to the subject before the court.

Mr Alai, who was arrested on Monday, denied the charge read out to him by Principal Magistrate Diana Mochache and was freed on bond of Sh300, 000 with an alternative of a Sh200,000 cash bail.

The blogger was charged with undermining the authority of a public officer contrary to Section 132 of the Penal Code.

ADOLESCENT PRESIDENT

The charge stated that on December 13, he posted on his Twitter account: “Insulting Raila is what Uhuru can do. He hasn’t realised the value of the presidency. Adolescent President. This seat needs maturity’.

The charge stated that the post was circulated with an aim to bring into contempt the lawful authority of President of the republic of Kenya.

His lawyers led by Siaya Senator James Orengo successfully opposed an application by the state to have the accused denied bail until the case is heard and determined.

The State Counsel had in an affidavit alleged that Mr Alai is likely to repeat the same offence if released on bond as has similar pending cases.

The prosecution also said that the investigations are still under way and there is likelihood that more charged will be preferred against Mr Alai.

SENSITIVE CASE

Ms Mochache ruled that the case is sensitive because it involves the President, but faulted the prosecution of failing to adduce satisfactory grounds for the accused to be remanded.

She said the State Council failed to explained how Mr Alai will continue making such posts, disclose what other charges is he likely to face and whether they he was granted bail or not.

She said the issue of having other cases was not enough to deny the accused bond as since he has not been convicted in the other cases and he should be treated innocent until proven guilty.

The case will be heard on February 16 next year.