Kenyan court strikes down law against sharing obscene material online

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A Kenyan judge has declared a section of the Kenya Information Communication Act (KICA), which criminalizes the publication of obscene information online, unconstitutional.

Justice Wilfrida Okwany ruled Wednesday that Section 84 (D) of the act is too vague and broad, therefore, making it difficult for an accused person to defend themselves.

The petition was filed by blogger Cyprian Nyakundi, who faces several charges after posting obscene information against Kirinyaga Governor Anne Waiguru last year. He is also facing similar charges before a Nairobi court, after posting remarks on his Twitter account, against Interior CS Fred Matiang’i.

Nyakundi later challenged the charges and Justice Okwany agreed, stating that the section does not explain who and how it will determine who has been influenced by the posts.

She further said section 84D conflicted with Article 33 on freedom of expression and Article 25 (C) on the right to a fair trial. The judge said a law, which creates an offence should not be vague as it should enable an accused person to defend themselves.

Justice Okwany ruled that circulation of ideas should not be restricted and people cannot be prohibited from enjoying their rights.

 

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