I Was Fixing IEBC Official's Mask- Rashid Echesa

Ombeta and fellow defense lawyer Evans Ondieki questioned an affidavit sworn by investigating officers seeking to detain Echesa for seven days, stating that it did not fully disclose what the officer was investigating.

A Kiambu court was left raising eyebrows after lawyer Cliff Ombeta alleged that Former Sports Cabinet Secretary Rashid Echesa was adjusting the mask of the IEBC official he slapped in Matungu- to its proper position.

Ombeta denied on Tuesday, October 9 that Echesa slapped the official during the by-elections in Matungu, as indicated in the charge sheet.

The fiasco was captured on camera and uploaded on social media, sparking a massive uproar and culminating in Echesa's arrest.

Ombeta and fellow defense lawyer Evans Ondieki questioned an affidavit sworn by investigating officers seeking to detain Echesa for seven days, stating that it did not fully disclose what the officer was investigating.

They also highlighted their concerns with the rights and liberties of an accused person.

On his part, the officer told the court that Echesa was a notorious offender who had several cases pending in court.

After hearing both arguments, Kiambu chief magistrate Patricia Gichohi voted to release Echesa on a Ksh1 million cash bail or a surety bond of Ksh1 million with the mention of the case slated for April 9, 2021.

Echesa went into hiding after he was filmed slapping an official from the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) at the Bulonga polling station. The public outrage his actions drew forced police to launch a search for him.

The IEBC official, who was declared a wanted man on Thursday, March 4, was in a heated argument with Echesa who had alleged that agents affiliated with the United Democratic Alliance (UDA) party were barred from accessing the polling station. 

Echesa, who is allied to the UDA party, also claimed a plot to rig the votes against their candidate, Alex Lanya.

"You were told by who? Our agents are outside the polling centre. You cannot keep our agents outside. Why are you chasing them outside?” an enraged Echesa asked the official.

A tiff soon ensued which led to Echesa attacking the officer, removing his mask, and then proceeding to slap the IEBC official.