Ex-MP Lempurkel freed on cash bail as he awaits appeal ruling

Former Laikipia North MP Mathew Lempurkel

Former Laikipia North MP Mathew Lempurkel who was jailed for assault. The High Court on December 20, 2021 freed him on cash bail pending the determination of his appeal.

Photo credit: File | Nation Media Group

The High Court has freed on Sh100,000 cash bail a former MP, who is serving a one-year jail term for assaulting a sitting MP five years ago, pending the determination of an appeal he has launched challenging his conviction and sentence.

Justice Justus Momanyi Bwonwong’a on Monday ordered the release of former Laikipia North MP Mathew Lempurkel, who was jailed two months ago by Senior Principal Magistrate Hellen Onkwani for assaulting Ms Sarah Korere.

Lempurkel was convicted of assaulting Ms Korere in November 2016 while at the office of former Interior CS Joseph Nkaissery.

In a ruling delivered virtually, Justice Bwonwong’a said the appeal filed by lawyer Saitabao ole Kanchory for the convict is arguable and has high chances of success.

“The appeal raises triable and arguable issues and has high chances of success,” ruled Justice Bwonwong’a.

The judge ordered Lempurkel to report once every month to the deputy registrar of the criminal division of the High Court until the appeal he has filed is heard and determined.

Lower court’s records

Justice Bwonwong’a further directed the registry to expedite the typing of the lower courts proceedings to enable Lempurkel speed up his appeal.

Mr Kanchory, who lodged the appeal, argued that the trial magistrate erred in law and fact by convicting the vocal and controversial politician.

The judge heard the appeal may take a long time to be determined since the lower court’s records are yet to be typed.

“Since the lower courts record is yet to be typed, this appeal may take long to be determined,” ruled the judge.

Mr Kanchory had submitted that the convict may have served almost the whole jail term by the time the appeal will be heard.

Ms Onkwani jailed Lempurkel for 12 months, saying it will serve as an example to violent men who trample on women’s rights with impunity.

In her sentence Ms Onkwani said, “I have also considered the fact that the accused person is a first offender but I note that he is a leader who should be a good example to others. I hereby proceed to sentence the accused person to serve one-year imprisonment,” the magistrate ruled.

The magistrate added that the prosecution team discharged its duty of proving its case beyond reasonable doubt and found that the accused person was guilty as charged for the offence of assault and causing actual bodily harm, contrary to Section 251 of the Penal Code.

The magistrate dismissed Lempurkel’s defence submissions, saying the issues raised by the accused in his submission of political rivalry were not raised in the pleadings.

On Monday, Justice Bwonwong’a directed the case be mentioned before the registrar for directions once the typed proceedings are certified.


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