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Why Friday evening arrests might come to an end

Mwaura Muthoni
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Handcuffs on display.[Photo/ Standard Digital]

The police are on the spot for arresting and detaining suspects, including VIPs on Fridays and public holidays. 

MPs now claim that the practice is meant to harass and intimidate innocent Kenyans as they wait to be presented in court. 

West Mugirango MP Vincent Kemosi tabled a motion to discuss the issue on the floor of the House. Over five MPs have in the past been locked up in the police cells on incitement, fraud, and corruption-related charges on a Friday. 

A dozen of other top government officials have been arrested on the same day. Samuel Arama (Nakuru West) is the latest MP to spend the weekend in police cells after he was nabbed arrested last Friday night by security agents over suspected land fraud.

Mr. Arama was arrested on the same day as Kenya Bureau of Standards Managing Director Charles Ongwae alongside six of his colleagues, over alleged bad sugar. 

Mr. Kemosi, who is also a lawyer was concerned that MPs, senior public officials and other members of the public who are often arrested during the end of the week are most times denied bail. 

The MP pointed out that Article 49 (I) (h) of the Kenyan constitution provides that an arrested person has a right to be released on bond or bail on reasonable conditions pending charge or trial unless there are compelling reasons not to be released. 

Minority Whip Junet Mohammed (Suna East MP) who was once arrested and detained for four days in Pangani Police station together with five of his colleagues in September 2017 lamented that police harass suspects held in their cells before they are presented to court.  

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-Mwaura Muthoni

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