Babu Owino: Embakasi East MP to know bail application fate today

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PHOTO/COURTESY

Embakasi East lawmaker Babu Owino was due back at the Milimani Law Courts on Monday where Chief Magistrate Francis Andayi was scheduled to consider a pre-bail report set to be filed by the Department of Probation Services.

Owino was on 20 January committed to remand awaiting the presentation of the report in court.

He’d denied two counts – an unlawful attempt to cause the death of a Nairobi DJ and carrying a firearm while drunk and disorderly – following a gun drama at Nairobi’s B-Club on 17 January.

During the bail hearing on January 20, Andayi declined a request to have the legislator detained at the Gigiri Police Station where he had been held since being arrested, committing the controversial lawmaker to Industrial Area Remand Prison instead.

The MP, formally known as Paul Ongili, was accused of unlawfully attempting to end the life of Felix Odhiambo Orinda after shooting him in the neck, contrary to Section 222 of the Penal Code.

The offence commonly referred to as accessory after the fact to murder attracts life imprisonment.

“Any person who becomes an accessory after the fact to murder is guilty of a felony and is liable to imprisonment for life,” Section 222 of the Penal Code reads.

Owino also faced a second charge arising from his disorderly conduct while armed, the prosecution telling the court the legislator violated Sections 33 and 31 (1) of the Firearms Act.

The Act (Section 33) prescribes imprisonment for a term not exceeding a year, a fine not exceeding Sh10,000 or both for any person found guilty of carrying a firearm while drunk or disorderly.

Section 34 (1) further prescribed a sentence not less than seven years but not exceeding fifteen years for, the possession and use of a firearm with, “intent to commit any criminal offence.”

Owino’s lawyer, Cliff Ombeta, filed an application for the release of the MP asking the court instead to restrict him from accessing B-Club, the scene of crime, where the prosecution said potential witnesses worked.

CCTV footage from the club showed Owino, a former University of Nairobi student leader, shooting the DJ, while smoking shisha, and surrounded by his friends – including a lady who was seated just next to him.

The DJ is still admitted to Nairobi Hospital having undergone surgeries to remove a bullet that was lodged in his neck.

The shooting elicited concerns, with many asking why B-Club was still operating despite a court order last year that it should be closed.

Many also wondered why the club continued to offer its clients shisha which is a banned substance in Kenya.