A blogger in false social media post on CS Matiang’I has been charged at Milimani Law Courts with publication of false information against the law.
Isaac Kibet, appeared before Senior Principal Magistrate Bernard Ochoi and denied the charges. Court was informed that on diverse dates between July 23 and 24,2020 at unknown place, within the republic of Kenya, he published false information on domain name Dailystar.co.ke and Facebook account Daily Star.
Through his lawyer Collins Kiprono, the accused pleaded with the court to be released on favorable bond terms claiming that he is a young journalist without a job.
According to the charge sheet, Kibet claimed “Fred Matiang’i is admitted at Aga Khan ICU battling Covid-19. The super CS is said to be among the 3CSs who contracted the deadly disease.
“He has been missing from President Uhuru key events. Various sources intimated to Daily Star that Matiang’i was admitted at the facility after his health deteriorated at his home where he was under self-quarantine.”
The prosecution said the accused posted the information knowing it to be false and calculated to cause fear and panic to CS Matiangi’I and his family.
Kibet allegedly committed the offence on dates between July 23 and 24, 2020 at unknown place in the country.
He denied the charges before Milimani Senior Principal Magistrate Bernard Ochoi.
Through his lawyer Collins Kiprono, Kibet requested the court to release him on lenient bond terms saying that he is from humble background.
Kiprono told court that his client recently graduated from Kenyatta University and he is a poor journalist having not secured a job”, the court was told.
Kibet, a free-lance journalist was arrested together with 19-year-old Emanuel Kimutai Kosgei on July 25 in Ngeria area, Uasin Gishu County.
According to the DCI, a laptop and two mobile phones that were used in publishing and disseminating the information were confiscated during the arrest.
Through social media, DCI condemned the act and warned Kenyans that those found committing the same offense would be punished for going against the law as provided under the Communication Act.
“It is extremely callous for one detached from sense of humanity to cause calculated, choreographed, planned, coordinated, conspired panic, apprehension, shock, devastation etc. that may have far reaching consequences not limited to sudden risks to life,” said the DCI.
In an interview at his Harambee House office on 24 July, CS Matiangi dismissed the claims that he had tested positive for Covid-19.
“If I was sick of Covid-19, I will be the first to go public with it because there is nothing to hide. I have been tested three times because our level of exposure is high because of high interactions.
“I am not made of metal; neither are my colleagues. We are human beings who get sick all the time because we are not heavenly. We go to hospital all the time…” he said.
The CS further claimed that the malicious post had brought distress upon his family and wanted the DCI to take action.
He was released on a cash bail of Sh 50,000.