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Omari Bakari v. Republic

(2016) JELR 94008 (CA)

Court of Appeal  •  Criminal Appeal 102 of 2014  •  17 Jun 2016  •  Kenya

Coram
Milton Stephen Asike Makhandia, William Ouko, Kathurima M'inoti

Judgement

JUDGMENT OF THE COURT

The substantial question in this appeal is whether the appellant’s trial, which resulted in his conviction for robbery with violence and imposition of the death sentence, is null and void because of failure by the State to assign him an advocate at State expense and to promptly inform him of that right, contrary to Article 50(2) (h) of the Constitution. The appellant contends that for that very reason, his trial is a nullity whilst the respondent thinks otherwise.

It is common ground that the offence with which the appellant was charged was committed on 12th October 2007. He was tried by the Chief Magistrate’s Court, Mombasa and convicted on 14th April 2008. All this was therefore during the currency of the former Constitution, which expressly provided in section 77 (14) that an accused person was not entitled to representation by an advocate at public expense. The issue raised by the appellant is thus only relevant as regards his first appeal in the High Court, wh…

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