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Blogger Robert Alai charged for allegedly undermining the Presidency

By JOHN KARUME | December 17th 2014

NAIROBI, KENYA: Controversial blogger, Robert Alai was yesterday arraigned in a Kiambu court, charged with intention to undermine the authority of the President of Kenya.

The accused was arraigned before Kiambu Principal Magistrate Ms Diana Mochache charged that on December 13, 2014 at an unknown place within the Republic of Kenya, he without lawful excuse published a message on Twitter that undermined the presidency.

Alai is alleged to have used the 'Insulting Raila is what Uhuru can do'. 'He hasn't realised the value of the presidency'. 'Adolescent President'. 'This seat needs maturity' words which their publication was calculated to bring into contempt the lawful authority of the President of Kenya.

The prosecution had applied that the court deny Alai bail, terming the matter sensitive, and it touched on the President of the Republic, noting that once released, the accused may continue with the same publications.

They noted that investigations on the matter were still going on and the accused could interfere with investigations. Alai is also facing similar charges in a Milimani court

The counsel termed him as a remedial offender, but the court agreed to grant him a bond noting that the case is still pending in court and the accused has a right to be bailed out.

The State Counsel had also submitted that the prosecution intended to prefer more charges against the accused, but the court ruled that it could not determine if the charges he might be charged with are bailable or not.

Alai who was represented by Siaya Senator, lawyer James Orengo was released on a bond of Sh300,000 or cash of Sh200,000 pending hearing of the matter on April 16, 2015.

Orengo argued that the case is not as sensitive as sedition which he was accused of during President Daniel Arap Moi's regime and he has a right to be bailed out like any other Kenyan.

However, the court ordered that the accused is not supposed to post anything touching on the matter before court on Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp or any other related.

The court threatened to cancel the bail if the accused defies court and publish similar or matters related to the case pending the court.

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