The Star (Nairobi)

Kenya: Eight Men Deny Link to Tana Delta Killings

EIGHT men suspected to have participated in a dawn attack at a village in Tana Delta that left 41 people dead were yesterday charged before a Mombasa court.

The eight were charged over the Kipao village attack in December that resulted in the deaths of five women, sixteen children, ten men and ten raiders. The eight alleged raiders denied twelve counts of murder before resident Judge Maureen Odero.

The eight are alleged to have committed the act at Kipao village in Tarasa Division of Tana Delta County on December 21 with others not before court.

The Kipao village, the biggest Orma settlement scheme in the Tana Delta was allegedly attacked at 5 am shortly after Muslim morning prayers by the raiders.

The CID yesterday charged Nichodemus Jasi, Forgiveness Wande, Elias Kalama, Samuel Mtembo, Daniel Bwashehe, Julius Masha, Benson Gwiyo and Japheth Gwiyo for the raid.

Twelve raiders were allegedly killed in a counter attack by the villagers. The eight were brought before the Mombasa High Court to take their plea as the Malindi judge was currently on judicial leave.

The state has lined up a total of 32 witnesses including three police officers for the case, according to the prosecution team.

The accused through advocate Paul Olando asked to be supplied with all the witness statements and applied to be released on bond or an alternative cash bail.

State Counsel Solomon Naulikha opposed bail application by the accused saying the offence they (accused) faced was serious. Lawyer Olando asked for three consecutive hearing dates to accommodate the number of witness and to expedite the determination of the case.

Justice Odero directed the eight to apply for bond before the trial judge in Malindi. The case will be mentioned on February 11. The eight are believed to have been part of a 200 men raiders team that participated in the Tana delta ethnic flare ups between the Ormo and Pokomo community last year.

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