The Shakahola massacre key suspect, Paul Nthenge Mackenzie on Wednesday boycotted the hearing of a terrorism case facing him and 94 others.
His lawyer, Wycliffe Makasembo’s, frantic plea to persuade him to appear in court proved futile.

The hearing was for a bond application filed by the prosecution to oppose the release of the 95 suspects.

Makasembo told Principal Magistrate Hon. Leah Juma that his client had complained of being separated from other suspects, accusing the prison’s authority of discrimination.

The defense lawyer also informed the court that his client raised fear of being “abducted.”

He sought an adjournment for him to advise his clients.

However, Senior Assistant DPP Peter Kiprop, Principal Prosecution Counsel Anthony Musyoka, and Senior Prosecution Counsel Peris Ongega opposed the adjournment, dismissing Mackenzie’s claims as theatrics to delay the proceedings.

The DPP team stated that there is no harm if the court hears their bond application in Mackenzie’s absence, stating that Article 50 of the Constitution allows the trial of any accused in absentia in certain circumstances.

The prosecution further submitted that Mackenzie is a convicted prisoner; hence, the law requires prison authority to separate him from his co-accused, who are remandees.

Hon. Juma also heard that Mackenzie has been radicalizing and encouraging other accused persons to stage a hunger strike, hence raising serious security concerns.

In her ruling, Hon. Juma summoned the officer in charge of Shimo la Tewa Maximum Security Prison and the investigating officer to appear and shed light on issues raised in court.

The court also directed the probation department to prepare bail reports to guide it in determining the DPP’s application to oppose the bond.

Hon. Juma further directed the National Counter Terrorism Center (NCTC) to prepare psychosocial reports on each of the accused persons.

The court will give further direction on 27 March 2024 when the matter will be mentioned.

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