The East African Portland Cement Company on Monday withdrew a court case against Kajiado MCA and 14 other people charged with alleged incitement to violence.
The 15 were arrested by police after the company raised a complaint of alleged incitement to violence against its non-Maasai employees at Kibini factory, and unlawful assembly.
Kenyewa/Poka MCA Henry Kimiti was arrested first and charged at the same court with allegations of inciting members of the Kibini community into violence against EAPCC staff.
Kimiti was released on a cash bail of Sh100, 000 pending full hearing, and determination of his case.
One week later 14 former employees of the company were arrested at the company premises for allegedly blocking the Kibini factory gates.
Nominated Senator Judy Pareno Speaks Outside Kajiado Courts https://youtu.be/ManCt7R4Bm4
Through its legal officer, Roseline Ominde, the company said after fruitful negotiations to have the matter settled out of court, it had no obligation to proceed with the case before the court.
Ominde told the district magistrate, Becky Cheloti that Portland appreciated that the accused people were protesting against the non-payment of their dues by the company.
“I am in court today to relay a message of reconciliation between the accused and EAPCC. The two entities have a lot in common and we cannot move on as a company without their goodwill. Our chairman has said this matter should be put behind us as we move on to stabilize our production,” said Ominde.
Ominde further said the Portland is still extracting minerals from Kibini area and that as it is now, the community has not obstructed it from doing the mining.
She added, “May I also report that the more than 500 people retrenched by the company will be paid from either today (Monday) or tomorrow (Tuesday).”
Counsel Solomon Njeru and Judy Pareno for the accused were assured by Ominde under oath that the company will not revive the same case in court again.
Cheloti ordered the accused to be released under Section 204 of Criminal Penal Code.
Addressing journalists outside Kajiado law courts, Pareno thanked the EAPCC for accepting to negotiate with the community members outside the courts.
“This is the way to go instead of fanning hostilities with the same people you are doing business with. I am also grateful to the chairman of EAPCC board for agreeing to listen to dissenting voices of the retrenched workers over their delayed pay,” said Pareno.