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Eric Omondi charged with creating disturbance, released on cash bail

 Comedian Eric Omondi at a Milimani court on Tuesday, April 04, 2023. [Collins Kweyu, Standard]

Comedian Eric Omondi who was arrested in the city demonstrating was on Tuesday charged before being released on a cash bail of Sh5,000.

Appearing before Milimani Senior Principal Magistrate Zainab Abdul, Omondi denied the charge, which stated that on April 3 at around 11.30am along Kenyatta Avenue, he created disturbance in a manner likely to cause breach of peace.

Further, the comedian was accused of erecting a barrier on the said road and shouting. This was seen as causing disturbance and inconveniencing other road users.

His lawyer Danstan Omari asked the magistrate to grant him a cash bail of Sh1,000 as the offense he had committed was bailable.

"Your honour, the accused is a national hero fighting for the rights of people without food. The Constitution, too, allows holding of demonstrations and picketing by Kenyans," argued Omari.

He added that Omondi is an internationally acclaimed comedian whose work rakes in a lot of money for the film and comedy industry that supports many artistes.

Omari told the court that when the hearing of the case commences, it might be found out that the comedian may have been shooting a film at the time of his arrest.

"His comedy revolves around making jokes and drama wherever place he is at," said the lawyer.

Omari stated that as a gesture towards ongoing healing and dialogue from the recent anti-government demonstrations over high cost of living, the comedian should be released on a cash bail.

During his arrest, police lobbed teargas canisters to disperse a crowd that had milled around Omondi before arresting him. Upon arrest, the comedian was taken to Central Police Station where he spent the night before his arraignment. 

Last week, Omondi was arrested and detained at Central Police Station as he pushed a handcart full of curricula vitae, which he was allegedly taking to State House.

He will appear in court on April 13.

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