A Molo court on Friday allowed police to detain the owner and manager of a bus that crashed in Fort Ternan, Kericho County, for 10 days as investigations continue.
Chief Magistrate Samuel Wahome allowed an application by Chief Inspector Festus Ondieki that sought the extension of time to hold Mr Cleophas Shimanyula and Mr Bernard Shitiabayi Ishindu.
Mr Shimanyula, the owner of the “Home Boyz” bus and Mr Ishindu, the Western Crossroads Sacco manager, were arrested on Wednesday after the morning crash that left 58 people dead and several others seriously injured.
The bus, which was heading to Kakamega from Nairobi, veered off the road and rolled several times.
When the two appeared in court on Thursday, the prosecution filed an application seeking to have them detained at Londiani Police Station for a week.
Mr Ondieki said he needs to reach out to families to help him identify the bodies, have the victims fill P3 forms and obtain post mortem results.
Chief Inspector Ondieki added that he needs to get records and other details of the bus company and the sacco from State agencies such as the National Transport and Safety Authority.
"The magnitude of this case will not allow police officers to conclude the investigation in such a short time and prefer appropriate charges against the two,” Mr Ondieki told the court.
“We thus request to be allowed to detain them for seven days."
The court was told that police are investigating offences of causing death by dangerous driving, failure by the two men to keep records of the bus crew among others.
The application was challenged by Mr Shimanyula and Mr Ishindu’s lawyers - who argued that the detention would curtail their right to freedom “which is guaranteed by the Constitution”.
The lawyers said the prosecution failed to prove how Mr Shimanyula and Mr Ishindu would interfere with NTSA records if released on bail.
In the ruling, which was deferred to Friday, the magistrate granted the extension of time sought by the police which he said is reasonable.
The court ordered that the two be detained at Londiani Police Station until October 22 when they take plea.
The two men’s families were, however, allowed to visit them in custody.
Two days ago, the Senate and National Assembly expressed outrage over the bus crash, with some MPs calling on Interior and Transport Cabinet Secretaries to take responsibility and resign.