DPP barred from tweeting about Kidero’s Ksh.213M graft case


DPP barred from tweeting about Kidero's Ksh.213M graft case
File image of Former Nairobi Governor Evans Kidero. PHOTO| COURTESY

In Summary

  • Trial magistrate Douglas Ogoti issued the orders on Wednesday after lawyers for the defense complained to the court about the DPP's tweets, saying that the tweets generate comments that are affecting the parties charged in the case.
  • The defense submitted that the tweets undermine the integrity and dignity of the proceedings and that of the accused persons.

The office of the Director of Public Prosecution (ODPP) and the defense have been barred from tweeting about the Ksh.213 million graft case against former Nairobi Governor Evans Kidero and 13 others .

Trial magistrate Douglas Ogoti issued the orders on Wednesday after lawyers for the defense complained to the court about the DPP’s tweets, saying that the tweets generate comments that are affecting the parties charged in the case.

“I order that no parties involved in this case should engage or tweet about this case in the media-social media (This does not include main stream media),” Ogoti directed.

The defense submitted that the tweets undermine the integrity and dignity of the proceedings and that of the accused persons.

“When the highest person in the office of the DPP tweets and the tweet generate such responses…then the DPP is not promoting a fair trial,” said lawyer Paul Ngarwa.

While seeking to have the DPP and his officers barred from posting the tweets about the case, lawyer Phillip Nyachoti said that they are disappointed with the office of the DPP.

“If the DPP is trying to copy from President Donald Trump then he’s wrong,” court heard.

The defense further said that the court should order the prosecution to accord the accused persons the dignity they deserve.

“This is a professional misconduct and the court should take action,” defense lawyers submitted.

However, lawyer representing the DPP Joseph Riungu opposed the application saying that the prosecution is not prosecuting the case on social media, but rather being transparent.

“We are supposed to be transparent and to be accountable, this particular submission that we should be gagged has no basis,” Riungu submitted.

Trial magistrate Ogoti is set to issue a substantive ruling on Thursday.

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Story By Dzuya Walter
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