Kenyan Facing Execution in Saudi Arabia Granted Reprieve Amid Social Media Campaign

In a dramatic turn of events, Stephen Munyakho, a Kenyan citizen facing imminent execution in Saudi Arabia, has been granted a temporary reprieve following a widespread social media mobilization effort.

Munyakho, the son of renowned journalist Dorothy Kweyu, was handed a death sentence in 2011 after a violent altercation with a colleague in the Gulf nation.

The incident left all involved parties with stab wounds, with Munyakho being the sole survivor, leading to his sentencing under Saudi law.

The “Bring Back Stevo” campaign, spearheaded by Munyakho’s supporters, highlighted the disparity in outcomes among the workers involved in the altercation, emphasizing Munyakho’s survival as a key point of contention.

According to the campaign, while all participants suffered injuries, only Munyakho faced the death penalty.

Under Saudi legal provisions, the death sentence can be averted if the family of the deceased agrees to receive compensation in lieu of the execution.

Munyakho’s family in Kenya has been diligently working to gather the required funds, amounting to three and a half million Saudi riyals (approximately $940,000), in an effort to secure Munyakho’s release.

In a critical development on Monday, just two days shy of Munyakho’s scheduled execution, Kenya’s Foreign Affairs Secretary announced that Saudi Arabia had acceded to the government’s plea to postpone the execution.

The deferment aims to facilitate further discussions among all concerned parties involved in Munyakho’s case.

The reprieve marks a pivotal moment in Munyakho’s legal battle and underscores the power of grassroots activism, particularly amplified through social media platforms.

As efforts continue to navigate the complexities of the case, Munyakho’s fate hangs in the balance, with hopes for a resolution that ensures justice and fairness for all involved parties.

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