A court Friday convicted comedian Eric Omondi and 15 others to a sentence of one month in prison for taking part in unlawful assembly by demonstrating over high cost of living.
Milimani chief magistrate Lukas Onyina however gave them an alternative fine of Sh10,000 to secure their release.
The magistrate convicted Omondi and his 15 co accuseds after they changed plea to guilty
Eric Omondi was charged alongside Peter Mukundi, Elisha Ochieng, Felix Ikutwa, Frank Misango, Alpha Juma, Cyril Isindu, Bonface Bahati, William Leshinka, Walder Sisulu, Philip Kiura, Ken Ndula, Mbwaya Mwale, Duncan Wafula, Rodgers Livoi and Wyclif Ligano. They were arrested on February 21, 2023 along Parliament Road.
Initially, they had denied the charges and were released on Sh10,000 cash bail.
Magistrate Onyina convicted all the accused persons on their own plea of guilty.
“I have considered the mitigation made and the nature of the offense which is a misdemeanor and the fact that the prosecution has said that they are first time offenders. I have also considered that they have saved the court’s judicial time. Each of the suspects is hereby fined Ksh 10,000 in default to serve one month in jail,” the magistrate ruled.
In mitigation, the convicts prayed for a lenient sentence saying they were basically advocating against the high cost of living and that the sentence should not be too harsh.
“Your honour please be lenient on us so that it would not discourage other activists from advocating for human rights for fear of being met with the lethal force of the law,” they said.
They were given 14 days of appeal if dissatisfied with the sentence.
Omondi has been leading protests against high cost of living. Police have arrested him on more than two occasions.