Sonko woes deepen as he faces terror charges

Thursday, February 4th, 2021 00:00 |
Former Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko under heavy security guard after he appeared before anti-corruption court. Photo/PD/CHARLES MATHAAI

Nancy Gitonga and Zadock Angira

Embattled former Nairobi Governor Mike Mbuvi Sonko’s woes deepened yesterday after the Anti-Terrorism Police Unit (ATPU) officers informed a Nairobi Court that they intend to charge him with terror related charges.

Sonko, instead of being taken to Gigiri police station where he was to be detained until today when he is to be presented before Kiambu Court, was rearrested and taken to Kahawa Law Courts, to face other charges.

He and his defence team were for the second time caught unawares. Even as he sobbed in court, prompting the Magistrate to interject and tell him not to cry and compose himself, little did he know that the detectives had also planned to charge him with other serious offences.

National security concern

Chief Inspector Newton Thimangu of the ATPU told the court that detectives had information of a national security concern in which Sonko was believed to be deeply involved, and requested the court to grant them 30 days to complete investigations.

“It is believed that the suspect herein is recruiting a militia group to disrupt the peace and stability of the nation leading to anarchy which can escalate to civil disobedience of law and order,” the ATPU said.

The sleuth also informed the court that Sonko was connected to financing of terrorism activities and that he was in advanced stage of procuring arms and ammunition using a wide syndicate which is complex and sophisticated.

The ATPU said they suspected Sonko was procuring uniforms resembling the military attire, and associated with a terrorist group, which he has been spotted wearing in public in disregard to the law and regulations restricting use of such attire by non-security agents.

A photo of Sonko and one of his aides, both donning the attires, was attached to the affidavit.

“The suspect has started arming his private security agents with full military attire namely military boots, military jungle uniform and firearms,” ATPU said.

The revelation of the new charges came just a few hours after Sonko’s bid to have him moved from Gigiri to Muthaiga Police Station over allegations of fearing for his life was yesterday rejected by a Nairobi court.

Sonko had appeared before Nairobi Chief Magistrate Douglas Ogoti over his Sh10 million corruption case, where he accused police officers at the Gigiri Police Station of attempting to inject him with an unknown substance.

Defence team

Through his defence team composed of John Khaminwa, Assa Nyakundi and Wilfred Nyamu, Sonko told the court that he is being mistreated in police custody at Gigiri. He accused police officers of denying him his medicine, saying he takes medication for a heart condition and high blood pressure.

Sonko is today likely to be handed a 30-day stay in custody awaiting verdict on his terror-related charges.

Further, Sonko said that he has been sleeping on a cold concrete floor without a mattress and blanket.

The former Nairobi governor while appearing in court yesterday also had the same clothes which he wore at Kiambu Law Courts on Tuesday.

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