Former Sports CS Rashid Echesa has been released on a Sh1 million cash bail or a Sh1 million bond in an assault case.
Echesa is accused of assaulting an IEBC official at Bulonga Primary School polling station, Matungu on Thursday.
“On 4th day of March, 2021 at Bulonga Polling Centre in Matungu Constituency within Kakamega County, with others, [Echesa] assaulted one Peter Juma Okula Khatetethe, presiding officer during the just-concluded Matungu Constituency by-election,” investigating officer Misheck Kagera told a Kiambu Court on Monday.
The prosecution had sought to hold the suspect for seven days to enable them conclude investigations.
Kagera told Kiambu Chief Magistrate Patricia Gichohi that the former CS was a “habitual offender” and was likely to interfere with witnesses.
But the defendant’s lawyer, Cliff Ombeta, argued that the charges against his client were trumped up and were only meant to discredit him.
Ombetta also dismissed allegations that Echesa was arrested. He told the court that the former CS in fact surrendered himself to the police.
“The respondent has not been brought to court with good intention. The prosecution has not even attempted to show how the accused has directly or indirectly tried to intimidate the witnesses,” he said.
The court also heard that the suspect was moved from Kakamega to Nairobi and then to Kiambu Law Courts because there were plans to storm the police station at which he was held briefly.
“Let the court protect his dignity. He is a respectable person who is a former Cabinet Secretary. The State has come here with an intention he stays in custody,” Ombetta added.