Kisii death row twins’ appeal fails

By Araka Matara.

An Appellate Court sitting in Kisii has upheld a death sentence on identical twins  convicted of  robbery with violence six years  ago.

This was the third time round that the applicants, Cliff Mokua and Edwin Mokua pursued an appeal against the death sentence they were first given by a Nyamira Chief Magistrate’s Court in 2011.

Dismissing the appeal for a fresh trial sought for by the applicants, High Court Judge, Winfridah Okwany said the application did not meet the threshold of article 50(6) on the grant of such orders.

Essentially, that court cannot sit on an appeal determined by a concurrent or court of higher jurisdiction, she added.

The applicants were advised to present their case before the Supreme Court for jurisdiction and determination or wait for its decision.

In their application, the duo had claimed the trial magistrate had erred in law and fact by denying them facilities and a statement of evidence that was to be attested against them as provided for in article 50(2).

But Justice Okwany ruled that the issue that the applicants were not accorded a fair trial was not enough reason to grant a fresh trial.

During an open day-called Parenting/Remote Day- at Kisii Main prison, Cliff petitioned the government to exercise the power of mercy and release them as they had reformed and even acquired skills that could be used productively in society. In addition, the cited the overcrowding in the said prison.

His twin brother, Edwin also criticized life sentence handed over to them alleging a business deal gone sour was the cause of their troubles, as their incarceration was all a means of exacting out revenge against them.

Their father, Bernad Mokua, petitioned the government to consider that the twins were young and at the time of their arrest were students, who if released would be productive individuals in society.

Power of Mercy Committee recently visited Kisii and collected public views on whether or not capital punishment should be abolished in the country’s penal system.

Edited by Victor Muyakane.


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