Kenya: Yassin Juma's Health Deteriorates in Detention

Journalist Yassin Juma at the Muthaiga police station (file photo).

Kenyan journalist Yassin Juma, who is being detained at the Sostegna Police Station in Ethiopia, says he has developed health complications amid concerns over his legal representation.

This is according to Abdulatif Elemo, one of the 8 lawyers representing a group of over 30 suspects arrested in the aftermath of the assassination on Oromo musician Hachalu Hundessa.

Mr Abdulatif told the Nation that he met Mr Juma yesterday and held some discussions with him.

It is at this meeting that the Kenyan journalist said he was feeling ill and had developed a fever while in detention.

The lawyer notes that someone who claimed to be a representative of the Kenyan Embassy in Ethiopia had also visited him yesterday after hearing about his health condition.

However, Mr Elemo reckons that the question of the journalist's legal representation is yet to be resolved by the Embassy.

"I don't think the Kenyan Embassy is committed to hiring him a lawyer. That's what I read from the Embassy's representative," he told the Nation.

The representative, who said he was a Counselor Advisor, gave Mr Juma 500 birr ($14) before he left.

Last week, the government said the Kenyan journalist has been given adequate assistance to defend himself.

A statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said Mr Juma, whose real name is Collins Juma Osemo, has been granted relevant consular assistance.

Mr Juma was arrested last month and is facing charges including incitement and involvement in violence, plotting to create ethnic violence and plotting to kill senior Ethiopian officials.

These are the same charges that have been levelled against several opposition politicians after protests erupted from the killing of Hundessa.

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