The mention of a case where Migori Governor Okoth Obado is a suspect of murdering Sharon Otieno will take place today.
This is after the case delayed for almost 3 years.
The latest request by the Governor to postpone the case has however sparked reactions.
But the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Noordin Haji said the prosecution will strongly oppose any delay tactics.
It is three years since the murder of Sharon Otieno, a 26-year-old Rongo University student.
The murder of Otieno and her unborn child sent shock waves across the country in September 2018.
Detectives found her mutilated body in Rachuonyo in Homa Bay County.
Adjourn the case
Governor Obado, a key suspect in the case, sought postponement of the trial. Obado’s lawyer requested the adjournment through a letter on June 28.
“My client is unable to travel outside the COVID-19 hotspot zone. Accordingly, we request the case be mentioned virtually on Monday, the 5th July 2021 for the purpose of fixing fresh hearing dates, hopefully at a time when the threat of COVID–19 has substantially subsided.”
DPP Haji said his office will strongly oppose any further adjournment: “In relation to Obado’s plea we are going to strongly oppose. It is evident that the individuals involved themselves in many activities that do not support their assertions of COVID-19.”
The DPP also asserted that the murder trial is a pivotal stage and has to proceed in the interest of justice. He rubbished Obado’s application made through his attorney Kioko Kilukumi.
“This issue of Obado seeking adjournment has been one of the tactics by most of the defence counsels who see the value in delaying justice and hearings, as ODPP we are going to stamp our authority and argue very passionately against it,” said Haji.
The hearing could not start in March last year, adjourning upon the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in the country. Courts also consequently scaled down on their operations.
However, the prosecution is keen to see the trial of Obado, his co-accused Casper Obiero and Michael Juma Oyamo proceed.
The prosecution team has lined up 37 witnesses who will consequently testify against the governor and his co-accused.
Sharon disappeared on September 3, 2018. Her murdered body was two days later, found dumped near Kodera forest.