Nairobi lawyer Nelson Havi has offered to represent eight Ambira Boys High School boys who were put in custody for seven days pending investigations after a clip of them hurling insults at Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i and his Education counterpart Amina Mohamed emerged.
The eight were arraigned before an Ukwala court but police asked for more time to investigate the incident.
Havi is now seeking the identities and contacts of their parents or guardians so as to provide them with legal representation.
“We cannot have a high handed executive decision to punish children and a more than willing Court assisting in the transgression,” he tweeted on Tuesday.
The incident, which provoked the ire of President Uhuru Kenyatta, has sparked mixed reactions with many such as Siaya Senator James Orengo saying they were influenced by the rot in the country’s politics.
While there are those who have supported the arrest and arraignment in court, others felt they should have been corrected rather that punished.
The students who had cleared their KCSE exams could be seen burning waste materials – some of which are believed to be learning materials – as they hurled unprintable words at the two CSs. They claimed to have successfully cheated in the exams despite the stringent measures spearheaded by top government officials.
However, Rarieda MP Otiende Amollo says the boys did not commit any crime.
#FreeAmbiraBoys , been away kiasi and I see Ambira Boys Were Arrested for some utterance they allegedly made. I Cannot fathom what offence they could possibly be charged with. Bad Behaviour & I’ll-manners is NOT Criminal! Free The Boys Forthwith!
— Hon. Otiende Amollo (@OAmollo) November 27, 2018
Here are other reactions:
Babu owino called Uhuru mtoto wa mbwa. Sonko called Babu Shoga n Caroline mutoko horny whore.Millie Odhiambo called Uhuru mshenzi, mwizi na fisi. Kuria threatened he would insert a broken beer bottle deep down her private part. Uhuru called raila muguruki.
Were they arrested?
— Nasir (@nasirkenya) November 27, 2018
THE MAGISTRATE should order immediate release of the 8 students of Ambira Boys. There’s no legal justification to hold the minors. Not for a day, and certainly not for a week. While there’s a moral question, no offence is disclosed to even contemplate preferring charges.
— Steve Ogolla (@steveogollaw) November 26, 2018
How fast?and furious did it take for the government to identify Ambira High School boys but identifying corrupt leaders in the government itself is like blocking Tana River not to flow into Indian Ocean. #AcademiaOnCorruption
— Bobby VJ™ (@BobbyVjoe) November 27, 2018
Yeah @kevmwachiro I guess you’re right, a nation of thieves ?
Anyone defending those students of Ambira High School who admitted to theft of exam papers on film (forget the insults, focus on the crime) are probably raising their kids in this fashion ? https://t.co/wn8ph7RFrs
— Ciku Muiruri (@MissCiku) November 26, 2018
Before Havi stepped in, lawyers had been censured for not rushing to their defence as they do for big time suspects.