TO AVOID DOUBLE JEOPARDY

Ex-rugby star Olaba to remain in custody

Court says matters raised in a separate application will apply in the case

In Summary

• Milimani chief magistrate Francis Andayi said the ruling in a separate application by the prosecution to cancel Olaba's bail will also apply to the case before him.

• Andayi was to deliver the bail ruling Tuesday but said the decision in the gang rape case which is to be rendered on May 10 will apply.  

Former rugby player Alex Olaba in a Milimani court on May 3, 2021.
Former rugby player Alex Olaba in a Milimani court on May 3, 2021.
Image: ENOS TECHE

Former Kenya Sevens rugby player Alex Olaba will wait until Monday to know whether he will be released on bond after denying charges of conspiracy to murder.

Milimani chief magistrate Francis Andayi on Tuesday said the ruling in a separate application by the prosecution to cancel Olaba's bail will also apply to the case before him.

Andayi was to deliver the bail ruling Tuesday but said the decision in the gang rape case, which is to be rendered on May 10, will apply.  

“I'm of the opinion that it's not appropriate to deliver a substantive ruling for the reason that this is likely to cause double jeopardy. What if the two courts come to different conclusions? That will be in conflict,” Andayi said. 

He said the trial court handling the gang rape case is best placed to make a proper determination on the issues that were raised before him. The issues were bail, and witness protection for the complainant in the case. 

Olaba was on Monday arraigned before Andayi and charged with conspiring to kill a key witness in his gang rape case.

Court documents say on diverse dates between April 14 and 22 within Nairobi county, jointly with others not before the court, Olaba conspired to kill a witness initialled in the charge sheet as K.A. 

Olaba also faced a second charge of conspiring to defeat justice. The prosecution said on April 22, he interfered with the trial process in the gang rape matter by attempting to cause the death of the key witness, K.A. 

The prosecution opposed Olaba's release on bail, saying he is likely to interfere with state witnesses, especially the complainant.  

In the gang rape case, prosecution counsel Eve Onunga has asked that Olaba's Sh300,000 cash bail be cancelled because he has committed an offence while out on bond. 

"Olaba cannot enjoy his liberty when the prosecution's key witness life is at risk," Onunga said. 

The prosecution asked the court to have Olaba remanded at the Industrial Area prison until the gang rape case is heard and determined. The prosecution also made an application to have the matter heard on camera. 

Magistrate Zainab Abdul is set to deliver her ruling on May 10.