Three suspects linked to gouging out Baby Sagini's eyes plead not guilty

From right: Rachael Nyakerario, Pacificah Nyakerario, and Alex Maina are escorted to a police cell after appearing before Kisii Resident Magistrate Christine Ogweno. [Sammy Omingo, Standard]

Three suspects linked to gouging out the eyes of Baby Sagini have now been charged in court with attempted murder.

Florence Nyakerario, Alex Ochogo, and Rael Nyakerario appeared at the Kisii Law Courts on Friday morning before Resident Magistrate Christine Ogweno.

The court heard that the three colluded and gouged out Sagini's eyes, leading to a permanent disability.

The Director of Public Prosecution (DPP) said that between December 13 and December 14, 2022, at Ikuruma location, Marani Sub-county within Kisii, the accused unlawfully attempted to cause the death of the minor by gouging out both eyes- contrary to section 220 of the penal code.

They, however, denied the charges leveled against them. The Magistrate ordered that they remain in custody pending their trial.

Prosecution Counsel Hilary Kaino submitted that the three should be denied bail saying they could interfere with the witness should they freed. He stated that key witnesses in the matter were close relatives of the accused.

"Letting them free will give them a chance to cause fear, intimidation, and anxiety and the accused will likely face threats from the surrounding community."

Baby Sagini was represented in Court by lawyer Nduhukire Anita who also supported the DPP's application to deny the accused bail and bond terms.

George Morara appeared in Court as an interested party representing Kisii County Government.

Morara told the court that the victim was under the care of Government Children officers. "His health status is being reviewed by medical specialists."

The Magistrate ordered that the accused be remanded at the Kisii Prisons awaiting trial.

The case will be mentioned on January 18, 2023.

Alex is a cousin while Rael and Pacifica are aunt and grandmother to the victim respectively.

Baby Sagini was transferred from Kisii Eye Specialist Hospital on Wednesday to Kisii's Government funded Children's Home.