What you need to know:
- President Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga asked the MP to “step aside” pending the outcome of the case
Embattled Embakasi MP Ferdinand Waititu was on Thursday suspended as Water assistant minister after he was charged with hate speech and incitement to violence. Read (Embakasi MP Waititu moves to block arrest)
President Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga asked the MP to “step aside” pending the outcome of the case.
“Following charges in court against the Hon Ferdinand Waititu, President Kibaki after consultations with Prime Minister Raila Odinga has asked the Hon Waititu to step aside as an assistant minister pending the outcome of the case,” read a Presidential Press statement.
On Thursday, the MP denied the incitement and hate speech charges when he appeared before senior principal magistrate Paul Biwott.
Mr Biwott ordered that he be held at Kileleshwa Police Station for a day and be produced in court today for a ruling on the bail terms.
Mr Waititu is now also being investigated for murder.
State counsel Lilian Obuo, told the court that the Director of Public Prosecutions, Mr Keriako Tobiko, wanted additional murder, assault and property damage charges preferred against the MP.
“Mr Tobiko has ordered the police to probe the MP for the murder of two people in Nairobi’s Kayole estate, shortly after the MP uttered inflammatory remarks against the Maasai community,” Ms Obuo stated, adding that the MP would face the additional charges after investigations.
“On September 24 at Kayole Corner, Mr John Kireri Gitau was killed by alleged Maasai watchmen,” the State counsel told the court.
She said the same day, Mr Waititu went to the scene around 10am, addressed a crowd and made utterances to the effect that members of the Maasai community be evicted from the area.
The prosecution said the utterances caused the crowd to start attacking members of the community and in the process, Mr Luckas Mitibon and Mr Nyangusi ole Sindoe were attacked and maimed while their property was destroyed.
The court was told the DPP’s office was in the process of investigating murder, incitement to violence, malicious damage to property and assault as a result of the “reckless” remarks.
And High Court judge Isaac Lenaola lifted an order restraining the DPP from prosecuting Mr Waititu in a case in which he allegedly called on the public to stone police officers.
“I had warned you earlier that I will not extend the order restraining the DPP from proceeding with the incitement case against you. You are handcuffed now. This is enough reason for me to discharge the order,” ruled Justice Lenaola and allowed the chief magistrate’s court to proceed with the case against Mr Waititu and a former councillor, Mr Patrick Mulili Kiluva.
The two are accused of inciting residents of KPA slums to stone police officers who had allegedly gone to evict them on December 13, 2010.
Justice Lenaola ordered the application seeking to stop the prosecution be heard on October 12.
Earlier, Ms Obuo had sought to have the MP remanded at Kayole Police Station for 48 hours.
She had initially requested the hate speech and incitement charges read to the MP on Thursday at a Milimani criminal court be deferred until police conclude the investigations.