The state has now admitted that the deaths at New Life Prayer Centre were reported to the police and  says there was no reason to suspect criminal activity.

In the ruling, the Shanzu Law Court released Pastor Ezekiel Odero on a Ksh 3M shilling bond or  a cash bail of Ksh1.5 million.

However, the prosecution has applied to detain him for 30 days, citing fresh affidavits in a case involving mass deaths.

The ruling came as the High Court certified as urgent a matter in which the Pastor Odero is seeking orders to stop the government from freezing his 15 bank accounts.

In his petition, Odero argued that by freezing his accounts the State is infringing on his and his congregation’s freedom of worship while further noting that the threat to freeze his church’s bank accounts is part of an unconventional path the State has allegedly taken to frustrate his ministry.

He also wanted the court to throw out an earlier ruling that suspended operations at World Evangelism Television, a TV station that he owns.

Lady Justice Olga Sewe directed Odero to file the papers to the respondents named in the petition and to appear for an inter partes hearing next week.

“Having perused and considered the Notice of Motion dated 3rd May 2023 together with the averments set out in its Supporting Affidavit, sworn on 3rd May 2023 by Ev. Ezekiel Ombok Odero, I am satisfied that the said application is indeed urgent,” the judge directed.

Odero was arrested on Thursday last week over the “mass killing of his followers” and his New Life Prayer Centre and Church, that lies south of the coastal town of Malindi was closed

The ruling freeing the wealthy televangelist  was received outside the courtroom by a throng of his followers who hoisted him up in the air, chanting “si uchawi, ni maombi” .

The members of the church had earlier on  held intense prayers outside the Shanzu Law Courts in Mombasa as they awaited the ruling on the case.