The Azimio la Umoja coalition has taken legal action to secure the release of its leaders and allies who were detained after participating in Wednesday’s protests. Represented by lawyer Dunstan Omari, the coalition has expressed concern about the unlawful detention of nine of its members.
Among those they seek to release are prominent figures such as Embakasi MP Babu Owino, Raila Odinga’s spokesperson Dennis Onyango, Kilifi South MP Ken Chonga, his aide Victor Katana, and Kilifi County Speaker Teddy Mwambire. Other individuals included in the suit are Wilfred Odalo, Hudson Onyango, Eric Otieno, and Antony Otsyula. Raila Odinga’s bodyguard, Maurice Ogeta, was initially mentioned in the suit but was later confirmed to have been released.
According to reports, Babu Owino was arrested at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport upon arriving in Nairobi from Mombasa, while George Aladwa was arrested near Kilimani shortly after attending a meeting with the Kenya Rural Roads Authority in Mombasa. Onyango’s arrest occurred after police officers conducted a raid on Odinga’s residence along Mbagathi Way and took him away.
The coalition has filed the suit urgently, demanding that the nine individuals be brought to court, whether alive or deceased. They have named the Attorney General, the Inspector General of Police (IG), and the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (ODPP) as respondents in the case.
In the court application, the coalition alleges that the arrested individuals were taken to undisclosed locations by individuals, some of whom were in official police uniforms and government vehicles, leaving their family members, friends, and fellow opposition members unaware of their whereabouts.
Three of those arrested, Chonga, Mwambire, and Katana, have spent the night in police custody in Mtwapa and are expected to be presented in court for arraignment.
The situation has raised concerns about the treatment of opposition members and has prompted legal action to ensure their rights are protected and that they receive a fair and transparent legal process.