Moses Kuria loses bid to have Safaricom compelled to release phone call data

By: VINCENT AGOYA

Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria has lost a bid to compel Safaricom to release phone call data he expected to use in his defence in a case in which he is charged with hate speech and ethnic contempt.

A magistrate overruled the politician’s request as “premature” and only served to “waste the court’s time”.

Mr Kuria wanted Safaricom compelled to release the call details relating to allegations made in court by Law Society of Kenya CEO Apollo Mboya, who is a prosecution witness in the hate speech case.

The witness had told the court that he had received four calls from advocates, who told him that Mr Kuria had posted the alleged hate speech messages on his Facebook wall.

Presiding Magistrate Theresia Nyangena said the application was unripe as the prosecution was yet to close its case and the suspect was yet to be put on his defence.

She said she was reluctant to dictate how the prosecution should conduct its case.

“It is my finding that it is premature. The court at this juncture cannot make a finding whether the accused has a case to answer and in my opinion (it) lacks merit, and only serves to waste the courts time,” she said.

The magistrate directed that the case facing Mr Kuria be heard and determined before the end of the year.

The hearing resumes on December 1.

In the case, Mr Kuria is charged with posting messages after the Gikomba bombing in which he accused members of certain communities of being responsible.

The prosecution says the messages were designed to stir ethnic contempt against the communities.

SOURCE: DAILY NATION