Three senior Kenya Power officials were yesterday charged with sabotage and negligence of duty after the State dropped similar charges against six of their colleagues.
Raphael Ndolo (Acting General Manager, Network Management), David Kamau (Manager Transmission, Network Department) and Julius Mwaniki (Second Assistant Engineer, Transmission Department) who were in charge of the central office denied the two counts, in relation to a power blackout experienced across the country on January 11.
Kahawa Law Courts Chief Magistrate Diana Mochache directed Ndolo, Kamau and Mwaniki to deposit Sh1 million cash bail with an alternative surety bond of Sh2 million. She ordered the case to be heard on March 7.
According to the charge sheet Ndolo, Kamau and Mwaniki were accused that on diverse dates between November 29, 2021, and January 11 this year, jointly with other Kenya Power employees not before the court, they unlawfully with intent to sabotage failed to maintain and reinforce the Dandora-Embakasi high voltage power lines that supply electricity to Kenyans, leading to the collapse of towers 11, 12, 13, 14 in Nairobi’s Imara Daima area.
“On diverse dates between November 29 and January 11 you neglected to attend to Dandora-Embakasi high voltage transmission power towers and lines 7, 11, 12, 13 and 14 the property of KPLC which had been vandalised a duty you were dutifully bound to perform as per your job description,” read part of the charge sheet
Separately, Senior Principal Magistrate Boaz Ombewa noted that the six had cooperated with investigations.
The six Peter Makasa, Joshua Wasakha, George Kipkoech, Antony Gathii, Geoffrey Kipkrui and Martin Musyoki were acquitted.
“The court takes note of the fact that the six respondents have cooperated through the investigations and are thereby hereby set free,” Ombewa ruled.
Defence counsels Cliff Ombeta and Dunstan Omari had urged the court to release their six clients on grounds that the charges stated that they were not solely to blame for the power blackout. They argued that their continued detention amounted to violation of their basic human rights.