Controversial blogger Robert Alai, was on Tuesday arrested by Police for publishing gorry photos of Wajir terror victims that saw several Kenyan men in uniform die in the hand of the Alshabab Militia.
On Monday, Alai had posted pictures of officers who died in Wajir on Twitter that saw him get a warning from police spokesperson Charles Owino who said such acts will not be tolerated. But was arrested the following day with police accusing him of disclosing information in relation to terrorist activities.
“The unfeeling act of posting pictures of our fallen heroes online by one blogger is very unfortunate and inhuman,” Owino asserted in the statement.
According to Section 27 of the Prevention of Terrorism Act, 2012: “a person who publishes, distributes or otherwise avails information intending to directly or indirectly incite another person or a group of persons to carry out a terrorist act commits an offense and is liable, on conviction, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding thirty years.”
Another Section of the same Act also provides that, “a person who, knowing or having reasonable cause to suspect that an officer is conducting an investigation under this Act, discloses to another person anything which is likely to prejudice the investigation, or interferes with material which is relevant to the investigation, commits an offence and is liable, on conviction, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding twenty years,”
While it is uncertain what part of the law the prosecution will depend on, Alai could become the first Kenyan to be charged under the controversial anti-terrorism law that targets publishers of information, including media houses, publications, journalists and bloggers.
A prosecutor from the office of the Director of Criminal Investigations will handle blogger Alai’s prosecution with police officers, in this case, the investigations officer, appearing as a key witness. He is expected in court on Wednesday when the prosecution is likely to prefer charges against him or seek more time to conclude investigations.