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February 20, 2019

Obado aide faces murder charges as police unravel Sharon’s death

Michael Oyamo (in handcuffs) at the Homa Bay law courts yesterday/ HABIL ONYANGO
Michael Oyamo (in handcuffs) at the Homa Bay law courts yesterday/ HABIL ONYANGO

Police were last night considering charging Michael Oyamo with the murder of university student Sharon Otieno.

Homa Bay Senior Resident Magistrate Lester Simiyu yesterday declined to grant Oyamo bail but asked the police to produce him in court today when she will decide on the application.

Simiyu said that though Oyamo has been in custody for a while “his freedom is not safe for social order”.

The prosecution had wanted to hold Oyamo for another 10 days to allow investigations to be concluded but Simiyu granted only 24 hours.

“We don’t want to violate rights of a suspect by holding him for long in police custody. I order that the accused be arraigned in High Court tomorrow (today),” Simiyu said.

The magistrate also ordered that the suspect would only be seen at the police station by his three lawyers Neville Amolo, June Ashioya and Rogers Abisaye — his brother George Oyamo and another person identified as Wema.

Residents packed the court to get a glimpse of Oyamo, Migori governor Okoth Obado’s assistant.

“Homa Bay OCS is also restrained from allowing the suspect to move to another police station,” she added.

Earlier, the prosecution led by Tom Imbali appealed to the court to grant them 10 days to enable detectives scrutinise evidence.

Imbali said they confiscated gadgets like three sim-cards and phone communication which may lead to more arrests. Ashioya opposed the application on grounds that it could lead to violation of Oyamo’s rights.

Read: Obado's PA to take plea in Sharon's murder case on Tuesday

Amolo accused police of taking Oyamo’s body samples for DNA test without his consent. “Police asked the suspect to allow them to take body samples for DNA test but he refused, saying he could not do so in the absence of his lawyers. But they ended up doing it,” Amolo said.

Oyamo’s arraignment caused drama at the court yesterday afternoon after a group of youths in the court compound chanted ‘Justice!’

Oyamo was dressed in brown shoes, black jacket and a stripped white shirt.

Former Kanyandoto MCA in Homa Bay Lawrence Obonyo was remanded at the Kisii police station for 14 days as investigations into the murder of Sharon continued.

The prosecution, led by state counsels Emily Waegulu and Amos Otieno, successfully applied to have the politician detained. They said he is a link to three other suspects who are still at large. The identity of the three suspects was not revealed.

Read: Ex-Homa Bay MCA in Sharon Otieno's murder case detained 14 days

Senior principal magistrate Nathan Lutta granted the prosecution’s application, saying it had merit.

The prosecutors said the suspect should be detained for 14 days to allow police complete investigations and for his own safety.

Lutta directed that Mula be remanded at Kisii Central Police Station until September 24 when he will take a plea.

Addressing the court, Mula said he did not oppose the application but requested that he stays at the police station for fewer days. “I’m unwell and I need to see my doctor,” he said.

The prosecutor said Obonyo has been mentioned in the abduction and subsequent murder of the student. He was mentioned by other suspects and witnesses. The prosecutor added that Cyber Forensic team in Nairobi is yet to analyse the suspect’s phone calls and any other data connected with him.

“The need for more time is for the benefit of the accused. We need to bring the right charge sheet before the court. The public is also baying for his blood and we couldn’t wish for something bad to happen to him. Upon getting enough evidence will be back to court.”

Also Read: Obado’s shadowy PA known by few but feared by many

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