Sport

Rio scandal: Case adjourned over Covid-19 scare

Rio scandal: Case adjourned over Covid-19 scare

Summary

  • Last week while making his defence, Mr Soi denied charges of abuse of office involving siphoning off of funds meant for athletes.
  • He said he was not the accounting officer of the National Olympic Committee (NOC-K) during the 2016 Rio Games and that when the money was misappropriated by purchasing tickets for undeserving persons, he was not in the country.

The hearing of the Sh88 million Rio Olympics scandal has been adjourned adjourned after coronavirus infection panic at the Office of Director of Public Prosecutions (ODPP)

The State counsel said she had been exposed to the virus after her fellow prosecutor at the ODPP tested positive of the deadly infection.

As a result, she also needed to be tested and subsequently proceed for self-quarantine.

She said other members of ODPP staff were also set to undergo the tests which were to be carried out by Lancet Kenya.

“The officer is in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU). We have been called to be tested by Lancet,” the State counsel told the court.

Milimani Chief Magistrate Elizabeth Juma heard that the said prosecutor was already in isolation.

While adjourning the hearing, the magistrate said it was proper to avert any risk or endangering lives.

“Since one of the prosecution counsels got exposed to Covid-19, it is not appropriate to proceed. She should keep the social distance and isolate,” stated Ms Juma.

The hearing was fixed to be heard next month for seven days on August 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 24 and 26 so as to expedite the determination.

Defence lawyers for the six accused led by Kimutai Bosek did not oppose the request by the DPP saying that everybody is at risk of getting the virus and wished their admitted colleague well.

Mr Stephen arap Soi, who was Team Kenya's Chef-de-Mission in the 2016 Olympics, was set to continue with his defence on Wednesday before the development.

After being stood down from the witness box, Mr Soi’s lawyer Kimutai Bosek said he will require 15 hours to finish his defence evidence.

He is charged alongside Former Sports SC Hassan Wario, former Principal Secretary Richard Ekai, Haron Komen, Francis Paul and Mr Patrick Kimathi Nkabu.

Last week while making his defence, Mr Soi denied charges of abuse of office involving siphoning off of funds meant for athletes.

He said he was not the accounting officer of the National Olympic Committee (NOC-K) during the 2016 Rio Games and that when the money was misappropriated by purchasing tickets for undeserving persons, he was not in the country.