Lamu Governor Issa Timamy will remain in custody until Monday when a Mombasa court will rule whether the State can detain him for 14 days to allow investigations on terrorism, murder and forceful eviction.
“A Criminal Investigations officer Reuben Mwaniki has sworn an affidavit indicating that the suspect is being investigated over murder, forceful eviction of population and terrorism,” said senior State Counsel Alexander Muteti.
Mr Muteti argued that Mr Timamy is “a man of means” and should be held for 14 days to complete investigations.
The Lamu governor had earlier Thursday been taken to the court under tight security from regular police and paramilitary General Service Unit (GSU) officers.
Mr Timamy was driven into the court precincts at around 12:40pm in a vehicle sandwiched between a police van and a pickup full of GSU officers.
The governor, who was accompanied by Lamu Woman Representative Shakila Abdalla, looked calm as he alighted from the vehicle before he was whisked away to the court’s basement cells.
He was taken before Mr Justice Martin Muya, who was informed that the governor had been arrested on Wednesday.
PARTY DEMANDS RELEASE
“The subject was arrested yesterday (Wednesday). We are before you to have him informed why he is here,” prosecuting counsel Alexander Muteti told the court.
One of Mr Timamy’s lawyers, Paul Buti, who told the court that his client ought to know why he had been arrested, requested an adjournment to consult with the governor.
The governor was arrested Wednesday shortly after recording a statement in relation to the June 15 and 16 Mpeketoni attacks that left 60 people dead.
Earlier on Thursday, the United Democratic Front (UDF), the party the governor belongs to, protested over the manner in which he was arrested and his treatment while under police custody and demanded his release.
Hundreds of Mr Timamy’s supporters had arrived at the court as early as 9am as there had been no indication whether the governor would be brought to court.
“We shall stand with you, Mr Governor,” shouted one of the supporters as the governor was led to the basement cells.
The courtroom was packed to capacity as the Governor’s supporters struggled to find space in order to follow the proceedings.
Apart from Mr Buti, Mr Timamy, who is an advocate of the High Court, is also being represented by lawyers Isaac Onyango, Duncun Okoth and Hamza Adam.
Mombasa Senator Hassan Omar also arrived in court some minutes before the case was adjourned and was to resume at 2:30pm Thursday.