During plea-taking on Wednesday; the accused, Gilbert Ntuyemungu,52, a Rwandan citizen, requested the court to release him on favourable bail terms saying he wanted to reunite with his family in Rwanda. He also argued that he needed treatment for the serious injuries he sustained during the accident that left him confined in a wheelchair.
On Thursday, he was denied bail by Molo Chief Magistrate Hellena Nderitu after the tragic incident occurred at Londiani junction in Kericho County. The court ruled that Ntuyemungu posed a flight risk and and lacked adequate surety to warrant the court to grant him bail.
Ntuyemungu was remanded at Nakuru GK Prison until his case is heard and determined.
Magistrate Nderitu highlighted the lack of evidence suggesting that Ntuyemungu had a fixed abode in Kenya, which could potentially lead him to abscond court proceedings. The absence of a repatriation treaty between Kenya and Rwanda further supported the court’s decision to deny bail, given the seriousness of the charges, which involve the death of 53 people and injuries to 25 others.
During his time in remand at Nakuru GK Prison, Ntuyemungu will be provided with witness statements, exhibits, the charge sheet, and other documentary evidence to aid in his defense.
Ntuyemungu has strongly denied the 90 charges brought against him, including causing death by dangerous driving, causing injuries, and causing damage to 10 motor vehicles on July 3, along Nakuru-Kericho Highway. He maintains that the incident was not caused by reckless driving but rather by an accident resulting from the truck’s brake failure. He claims that he had no motive or intent to harm the victims, whom he considered strangers to him.
However, the investigating officer, Florence Auma, has stated in her affidavit that the accused is facing charges of mass killing due to careless driving and other serious offenses. Auma emphasized the severity of the potential punishment if Ntuyemungu were found guilty and expressed concerns that he might attempt to flee the country.