Police take fingerprints of Ruth Odinga, Senator Outa

Kisumu Governor Anyang' Nyong'o, Senator Fred Outa and former deputy governor Ruth Odinga outside a Kisumu court where Mr Outa and Ms Odinga were charged in connection with last week's disruption of IEBC training. [Collins Oduor, Standard]

Kisumu Senator Fred Outa and former deputy governor Ruth Odinga presented themselves to police on Tuesday as ordered by a court.

It was not immediately clear why the two leaders were expected to record statements when they had been charged in a Kisumu court on Monday.

The two declined to record statements as sought by criminal investigation officers led by Jackson Kieti.

They turned up at Mr Kieti's office accompanied by their lawyer, Jeff Yogo, Kisumu Residents' Voice Association chairman Audi Ogada and their supporters.

Mr Yogo repulsed efforts to have the leaders answer questions, saying his clients had nothing to record because they had been charged in a court of law.

Training session

"Sir, I can only allow you to take fingerprints and record their names, but you cannot seek any statements because they are already accused," Yogo argued.

Traditionally, a statement is written or a video recorded and may be used as evidence in court. Before making any statements, the investigating officer is obligated to ask a suspect a number of questions to establish what happened.

This is where Yogo interjected.

"Mr Kieti, you can only write a statement when you are a suspect to enable police to carry out investigations."

He argued that his clients were no longer suspects because they had already been charged before Principal Magistrate Julius Ngar on Monday.

Police have accused the two of inciting the public to disrupt a training session by the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) in Kisumu town.

The court released them on a personal bond of Sh500,000 but asked them to present themselves to the police at 10am yesterday.

Director of Public Prosecutions Keriako Tobiko had ordered their arrest after analysing a letter from the Kisumu Directorate of Criminal Investigations directing that investigations should be done.

Last week, hundreds of youths stormed training sessions in Siaya, Kisumu and Homa Bay counties, where IEBC election returning officers, presiding officers and clerks were being trained ahead of tomorrow's poll.

The attacks came at a time when the National Super Alliance (NASA) had said the poll would not take place after the commission declined to effect its “irreducible minimum” demands, which included the firing of IEBC Chief Executive Officer Ezra Chiloba.

The ruling Jubilee Party and IEBC insisted the election would be held as scheduled.

Chanting "No reforms, no elections!", the youths stormed the training centres, as police fired in the air to disperse them.

In Awasi, Kisumu, youths destroyed IEBC training materials and robbed trainees of their phones, laptops, money and bags among other valuables. In Bondo, Siaya, IEBC training was suspended indefinitely after rowdy youths attacked about 100 trainees who had just arrived at St Mathews Sironyo Academy.

According to Bondo IEBC Returning Officer John Matekwa, some of his officials sustained minor injuries.

Deputy County Commissioner Richard Ajwang termed the attacks an act of thuggery. In Kasipul, Homa Bay County, youths disrupted the training at  Sikri Vocational Training Centre.