Charges against Kipchoge Keino now formally dropped in court

The prosecution has formally withdrawn corruption charges relating to the 2016 Rio Olympics against former athletics champion Kipchoge Keino.

He is likely to become a state witness other officials charged over the mismanagement of more than KSh55 million ($545,000), according to Nation sources.

His lawyer Cecil Miller did not object to the withdrawal which now also expunges a requirement to report to the  police.

Keino would have faced two counts of using his office to misappropriate funds during the Rio Games.

The trial magistrate Douglas Ogoti directed that Keino's name be struck off the amended charge sheet in light of the new development.

Miller said that the prosecution had analysed the evidence before it and  resolved not to charge Keino.

The veteran lawyer has also come on board to represent  former Sports Principal Secretary Richard Titus Ekai in the trial.

Ekai is charged alongside and two ex-senior officials in relation to the Rio scandal.

The two are former director of administration Harrun Komen and ex-NOCK secretary general Francis Kanyili. 

Their  prosecution was approved after "sufficient evidence" was unearthed by investigators.

They face six counts of abuse of office and four counts of willful failure to comply with the law relating to the management of public funds.

The were also be charged with embezzlement of KSh22.5 million, KSh16.8 million in underutilised air tickets, KSh15.9 million in overpaid allowances, and KSh6.5 million expenditure on unauthorised persons. 

Ekai and his co-accused are out KSh2 million bond each or KSh1 million cash bail. 

Keino, a two-time Olympic gold medallist, had been implicated alongside five former government and national Olympic committee officials in misappropriation of funds.

Miller said Keino got of the hook as he was not a signatory when the monies were paid.

"My clients role as the chairman of the National Olympic Committee of Kenya (NOCK) was to make sure that the teams were catered for during their preparations for the Rio Olympic Games," Miller said.

In the case former Sports minister Hassan Wario is charged with abuse of office "by improperly conferring benefits amounting to Ksdh 5.9 million" to attend the games in Brazil.

The court has demanded that all suspects surrender their passports but are at liberty to apply for them if they need to travel.