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MPS NOW QUESTIONS DCJ’S POWERS TO APPOINT PANEL OF JUDGES TO DETERMINE CASES.

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BY SAM ALFAN.

Members of Parliament have challenged the manner in which a bench of five judges was appointed to hear a petition challenging an advisory by Chief Justice David Maraga for dissolution Parliament for failure to meet two-thirds gender rule.

The MPs through Senior Counsel Ahmednasir Abdullahi said the appointment of the bench of five judges is unconstitutional because the CJ has no powers to delegate to someone else, the power to appoint a bench to determine constitutional matters.

Mr Abdullahi questioned how the Deputy Chief Justice Philomina Mwilu appointed the bench after Justice Maraga disqualified himself allegedly because he is a party to the case.

“We have no information whether the Chief Justice disqualified himself from appointing the five judges or how the file landed in the office of the DCJ,” Abdullahi submitted.

The veteran lawyer said the current bench cannot hear any of the petitions since it is unconstitutional and urged the court to refer the case back to the Chief Justice for appointment of the bench.

Justice Mwilu appointed Justices Lydia Achode, Pauline Nyamweya, George Odunga, James Makau and Antony Ndungu on October 14, to hear more than five cases filed after Justice Maraga advised President Kenyatta to dissolve Parliament.

“The petitioners pray that the judges recuse themselves from the purported assigned bench pursuant to Article 165 (4) of the Constitution,” they argued.

The Attorney General through Immanuel Bitta said he had difficulties with proceeding with the matter as he has not been served with the order by DCJ appointing the bench as earlier directed to be served with the same.

“We do not know who appointed the bench and how the file moved from the High Court to the DCJ leading to the appointment of the current panel,” said Bitta.

Justice Maraga through his lawyer Ochieng Oduol said the current bench has authority to hear and determine the applications seeking their recusal.  

He informed the bench that DCJ appointed the judges since Maraga cannot appoint the panel as he is the one sued.

In the ruling by the five judges, the court enjoined DCJ as an interested party in the case by the MPs and consolidated all the cases for the purpose of hearing the application.

They further directed the parties to exchange pleading in the matters and file their submissions and responses by Judiciary e-filing system by December 15.

The case will be mentioned on December 17 for further directions.

LOBBY SEEKS LEGAL REPRESENTATION FOR SEXUAL OFFENDERS WHO RISK LIFE IMPROVEMENT.

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BY SAM ALFAN.

The High Court has certified as urgent a petition by a lobby seeking to compel the government to provide legal representation to suspects facing sexual offences charges.

While seeking to suspend the hearing of over 4088 ongoing sexual offences cases in the country, Sheria Mtaani through lawyer Shadrack Wambui argues that the offences attract a maximum of life imprisonment and the offenders need to be assigned advocates.

In his petition the lawyer wants the High court to compel the office of the Chief Justice either by himself, chief registrars or their agents to assign advocates to such accused persons, where an accused person cannot afford advocate fees.

“A declaration be hereby made that prosecution of persons accused of Sexual offences that attracts the maximum imprisonment for life, to wit offences under section 3,4,5,8,10,20 and 26 of Sexual Offences Act without an advocate of their choice or an advocate assigned to them at the expense of the state would occasion substantial injustice to the accused persons, and therefore inimical to their rights to a fair trial as per article 25(c) and their rights to access justice under Article 8 of the Constitution,” says Wambui in court papers.

The lobby group further wants a declaration that the court has an obligation to inform such a person facing charges that attract life imprisonment that the accused person faces a serious offence that would attract life imprisonment without the possibility of remission.

The court should also make preliminary inquiry on whether the accused person would require legal representation from the state expense, he said.

Wambui argued that there are over 3000 cases of sexual offences in nature that are pending determination and despite the harsh and punitive punishment that are prescribed by the law, there is no certainty that the said accused persons are represented by an advocate either at their cost or at the expense of the state.

“It is therefore imperative that the question of representation of the alleged sexual offenders who upon conviction could be imprisoned for life is determined in priori so as to avoid a further miscarriage of justice and a mutilation of the constitutional promises to an accused persons on their rights to fairness,” he added.

Sexual offences attracting life imprisonment include rape, attempted rape, sexual assault, defilement, gang rape, incest and the deliberate transmission of HIV or any other life threatening transmitted disease.

According to lawyer Wambui, it is paramount in view of the seriousness of the said offences, special consideration commensurate to that given to this group of alleged sexual offenders.

He added that with the harsher punishment of imprisonment for life or the punitive sentences meted to these group of sexual offenders upon conviction, care and circumspection must be exercised during the trial in order to avoid any procedural or substantive error in the proceedings that would otherwise prejudice an accused.

He therefore said there is a need for the accused person to be presented during the trial.

The court will give directions on the case on December 8.

HOST OF 44 SCHOOL CHILDREN PARTY DETAINED.

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BY SAM ALFAN.

Millicent Muthoni Kithinji, host of 44 school children arrested in a house at Nairobi’s Mountain View Estate has been detained for seven days to allow police t
complete the probe.

Kithinji was arraigned alongside David Kibe Wambui, George Kamau Muthoni and Michael Murega before milimani Principal Magistrate Bernard Ochoi who granted the police request for more time to continue holding them.

The four suspects will be remanded at Kabete Police station.

They are being investigated on offences of child trafficking, causing children to be exposed to sexual abuse and exploitation including prostitution and pornography.

The prosecution says the teenagers were involved in pornography and drugs in presence of the four who are suspected to have had knowledge of the said party.

The court heard that Wambui and Muthoni who are businessladies in Mountain view area ,were involved in supply of drugs and alcohol to the teenagers.


The court heard that on November 21this year police arrested the suspects after they received a tip off that there was a large crowd of teenagers partying in the said compound.

The teenagers were allegedly involved in pornography and drugs in the presence of the owner of the house and Morega.

Police also says that Kithinji was aware of the party having been informed by her son with who she lives with. upon searching the compound, the police recovered condoms, bang and assorted empty bottles of alcohol.

The 26 boys and 18 girls aged between 13 to 17 years are drawn from Nairobi, Kiambu and Machakos counties.

The police sought for more time to complete investigations on grounds that they want to identify the people who benefit from the pornographic images taken from such events and suspect the organizers of these events lure the teenagers through social media platforms.

They also to establish whether the event is related to several other incidences such the one that occurred in Komarock and there parts of Nairobi where several children are reported missing.

The teenagers were handed over to the department of children services and will be taken to court to seek further orders, which according to the police, form a major part of the investigation.

COURT FREES MAMA LUCY HOSPITAL CEO IN CHILD TRAFFICKING CASE.

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BY NT CORRESPONDENT.

Mama Lucy Hospital CEO and administrator can now breath easy after they were released by a Nairobi court over accusations of the child trafficking.

Principal magistrate Bernard Ochoi released Emma Mutio and Regina Musembi after the prosecution revealed that there was no compelling evidence against them.

The magistrate, however, directed Deputy Director of medical services at Nairobi Metropolitan Services, Musa Mohammed, and two social workers Makallah Fred Leparan and Selina Awour to be charged with child trafficking offences.

The prosecution submitted that the police had completed investigations and there was enough evidence to charge the three.

Dr Mohammed will plead to the charges at a different date after the court was informed that he was sick and admitted at Kenyatta National Hospital.

Mutio and Musembi’s lawyer Danstan Omari said that the alleged child trafficking syndicate started last year while the CEO was still working at Mbagathi Hospital.

He said the CEO had only been at Mama Lucy Hospital for ten days when she was arrested.

The lawyer questioned how the police could arrest somebody and seek to detain them on grounds that they do not know where they reside yet they have families and careers.

“Police have done investigations and found that they are clean. Who will compensate their spoilt names as the whole world has seen them as child traffickers?” Omari questioned adding that he would take instructions on that.

The child trafficking syndicate was aired by BBC news after their investigative journalists unearthed scandal.

ITUMBI MAKES STEPS TO PROSECUTE CS MATIANGI OVER RUARAKA SCAM.

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BY NT CORRESPONDENT.

Hearing of an application seeking to prosecute Interior Cabinet Secretary Dr Fred Matiangi over the payment of Sh1.5 billion to a businessman for acquiring two parcels of land will be heard on Tuesday.

Milimani Anti-corruption chief Magistrate Douglas Ogoti directed the application by former state director of digital communication Dennis Itumbi to be heard on November 24. 

“The applicant’s ex-parte application dated November 18 is fixed for hearing on November 24, 2020 and Covid-19 rules and regulations  by MoH to be followed to the latter,” ordered Ogoti. 

Itumbi filed the application under certificate of urgency seeking to privately prosecute Dr Matiangi over payment, which has been termed by court as irregular.

If successful in his bid, Itumbi charge Matiangi with abuse of office, willful failure to comply with the law and applicable procedure and guidelines relating to public funds and conspiracy to defraud government of Sh1.5 billion. 

According to the charge sheet filed in court, he alleged that on or about March 17, 2017 at the ministry of education Nairobi being the Education, Science and Technology CS, together with others not before court, he used his office to improperly confer a benefit of Sh1.5 billion to Afrison Export Import limited, Huelands limited and Whispering Palms Estate.

The payment was for compensation for land allegedly acquired by two government learning institutions.

He said the CS put up a formal request pursuant to section 107(1) of the Land Act, 2012 to the National Land Commission to commence the process leading to the compulsory acquisition of land in which Ruaraka High school and Drive Inn primary schools stand, in the pretext it was private land. 

In the court documents, Itumbi argue that the government through Ministry of Education under Dr Matiangi initiated the process that saw taxpayers lose Sh1.5 billion.

He claims that for more than two years Director of Public Prosecution Noordin Haji has not taken any progressive steps to prosecute Matiangi, who played a major role in the loss of public funds.

He further state that EACC has no reasonable cause why it has not concluded investigations into the irregular award to the said controversial parcel of land

“The office of Director of Public Prosecution on the other hand did not bother to respond to the issues raised by the applicant. Instead he decided to take a more than usual and reasonable reticence in addressing the issue raised by the applicant’s letter,” he claims. 

Itumbi argued that unless Matiangi who was the mastermind in setting up all the necessary motions that resulted the loss of funds, there is likelihood that great public injustice will result, because public money that was entrusted to the state officers like him have already gone to individual pockets illegally. 

Itumbi says he fears that Matiangi who is the chairman of the National Development Implementation and Communication, a committee which places him in charge of delivery of all government programmes and projects as per the executive order and is mandated to approve proposals budgery provisions in annual ministerial budgets and medium – Term expenditures, he will influence the approval of payment of the remaining balance of Sh. 3,269,040,600 billion. 

He adds that investigations by the committee on Quality Assurance and Standards Investigative headed by John Oloituaaa in it report found that the said land in question had already been surrendered as a public utility and therefore Afrison Export Import limited and Huelands limited had no basis for compensation of Sh. 1.5 billion for the said land.

“In blatant disregard of the report by the committee that the schools occupied a portion of land been surrendered. Matiangi put forth a formal request to compulsory acquire the said land pursuant to section 107 (1) of the land Act in a letter dated March 17,2017”, addds Itumbi. 

The ministry and the then CS Matiangi ignored the committee report and he wrote a letter to the National Land Commission dated February 7,2017 stating that schools are already developed on part of the said land which per the said letter is private land and that it was necessary to acquire the portion for the public interest.

According to the Itumbi documents, Sh. 1.5 billion being part payment of the compensation for the purported acquisition was paid to Whispering Palms Estate limited on January 30,2018 and the authority to pay Whispering Palms Estate video a letter dated January 26,2018 where businessman Justin Mburu and Mark Mburu the co-directors of Afrison Export import and Huelands limited instructed NLC to pay for the compensation amount to this company iwho purported to be registered owners of the property. 

“From the foregoing. It is evident that the person who is solely to blame for the tax payers loss of money is Fred Matiangi because he ignored the recommendations in the Quality Assurance and standard Investigative report that advised that the land where government two institutions were situated was on public land and that the two companies Afrison export import and Huelands limited had No basis to be compensated “, adds Itumbi. 

Itumbi further adds that Matiangi’s letter dated March 17,2017 was one that set all necessary motion for the tax payers loss Sh. 1.5 billion money that would have been used to realize the social economic rights most of the Kenyans lack were it not for this major decision taken by him no money would have been released by treasury neither would the two companies receive Sh. 1.5 billion paid to them illegally

MISTRESS WANTS FAMILY TO CATER FOR DNA TEST IN MURUNGA’S PATERNITY ROW.

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BY SAM ALFAN.

A woman who stopped the burial of Matungu Member of Parliament Justus Murunga has denied meeting his two wives during his courtship with the deceased. 

Agnes Wangui told the court that Mr Murunga never allowed her to meet with Christabel Murunga Grace Masitsa, his widows.

Through lawyer Danstan Omari, Wangui said she doesn’t know them on individual basis, but she only knew of their existence through Murunga. 

“It is utterly misleading for the applicants to claim that I have not made any attempts to contact them regarding this matter, when the truth is that when we had agreed to meet over the same, they sent a third party (a brother-in-law) who is a stranger to this suit,” says Wangui. 

Wangui added that court orders are to be unconditionally obeyed and it is rather outrageous, contemptuous, ridiculous and flies against the face of logic for the widows to demand from her Sh10 million as security and condition to stop the burial.

She said that prior to his death, Murunga had intimated to her of his intentions to permanently settle her and the children in Karen, Nairobi where he had purchased a parcel of land and construction plans were in the pipeline.

She further said the deceased had also expressed wishes of settling down with her at their would be home, formalize their union before making it known to his family or the public.

“As a matter of fact, he had wished that the same be conducted in accordance with Agikuyu marriage customs,” she said.

Unfortunately, she said, death robbed him before he could actualize his intentions.

She said she filed the primary suit in good faith on behalf of the minors, and it is her prayer that the same be expeditiously determined to meet the ends of justice and the best interests of the minors. 

“I am ready and willing to have the DNA test conducted soonest possible, but at the cost of the family or the estate of the deceased since I consciously and strongly believe that by virtue of being the deceased’s children, such costs should be borne by their father’s estate”,  Wamburi adds. 

She adds that she was and still willing to ensure that the deceased is laid to rest but it should be after the DNA results are officially presented to both parties.

She also wants a guarantee that the children will also be included in the burial arrangements and final rites and further, they be recognized as the Murunga’s children.

MURUNGA’S WIDOWS WANTS SH10 MILLION FROM MISTRESS AS SECURITY FOR STOPPING BURIAL.

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BY SAM ALFAN.

Two widows of Matungu MP Justus Murunga now want a mistress who has sued to stop his burial directed to deposit Sh10 million in court for security.

In case Ms Agnes Wangui fails to deposit the money, Christabel Murunga and Grace Murunga want the court to set aside the order obtained by the mother of two.

The two widows said the money will act as security to cater for burial expenses and fee for cancelation of services to be rendered during the burial.

A Nairobi court stopped the burial on Thursday, pending the determination of a paternity dispute the mistress has filed.

Senior Principal Magistrate A. N. Makau stopped the burial pending hearing of the case next week.

Wanguu through lawyer Danstan Omari, claims to have two children with the late MP and has accused Christabel and Grace of conspiring to deny her and her children access and participation in the burial arrangements and the actual burial event.

But in reply, the widows said the National Assembly is catering for the preservation of the body at the Lee Funeral home and that will be catered until November 26.

They added that they do not know the children alleged sired by Murunga.

Further, they said the allegations cannot be verified and it will be a big loss if the burial is stopped and it turns out that the woman’s claims are false.

Both women claim that their husband never informed them he had children with another woman.

But Wangui said she first encountered the deceased in the year 2012 when he was a supervisor at Embakasi Ranching. “I was a businesswoman engaged in rendition of beverages and snacks within the Sewage area in Ruai,” she says in court documents.

She says the deceased told her he lived at Utawala with Christabel and thus, around May 2016 he rented a house for her and their son at Ruai. “The deceased used to pay our monthly rent and maintenance costs for the child by channeling the amounts to my M-pesa numbers,” she claims.

SACKED HIGH COURT JUDGE MARTIN MUYA TO WAIT LONGER FOR APPEAL HEARING.

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BY NT CORRESPONDENT.

The Supreme Court will give directions on December 7 on the appeal by sacked High Court Judge Martin Muya.

The matter was postponed yesterday when veteran lawyers Fred Ngatia and Philip Nyachoti, for the aggrieved ex- Judge, were expected to disclose the status of their preparation.

The two advocates had previously appeared before the Supreme Court Deputy Registrar, Daniel ole Keiwua, and applied for time to finalize their formal arguments.

The court’s registry explained to Justice Muya’s lawyers and the Attorney General that the proceedings had been taken out due to unavoidable circumstances.

The AG is representing the seven-member tribunal that recommended the removal of Justice Muya from the bench for gross misconduct.

Muya petitioned the Supreme Court to block his removal from the bench early this year for alleged gross misconduct.

The aggrieved Judge through lawyer Philip Nyachoti is challenging the findings pronounced against him on March 17 by the seven-member judicial tribunal, chaired by retired Appellate Judge Alnashir Visram.

The recommendations by the team were subsequently presented to President Uhuru Kenyatta on March 20 at State House in Nairobi, effectively sealing the fate of the long-serving judicial officer, who rose through the ranks from the magistracy.

The tribunal concluded that Justice Muya was guilty of gross misconduct by his delay in delivering reasons for his ruling dated May 30, 2017 in a commercial dispute while sitting in Bomet. But the Judge had justified his professional handling of the civil suit, in which his decision has never been challenged in the Court of Appeal.

COURT SANCTIONS WINDING UP OF AMACO.

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BY SAM ALFAN.

The High Court has sanctioned the winding up of Africa Merchant Insurance Company (Amaco), an insurance firm associated with Deputy President William Ruto.

Justice Margaret Muigai ordered the liquidation of the company after failing to pay a debt of Sh10.2 million demanded by six people.

The Judge ordered the official receiver to oversee the process and eventually wind up the insurance company.

Elizabeth Karithi, Anisia Muthoni, Faith Muthoni, Silas Kinoti, Abel Mwaniki and John Mwangi moved to court seeking that Africa Merchant Assurance Company be liquidated under the supervision of the official receiver.

They also sought that the directors of the company be ordered to personally satisfy such liabilities of the company as shall remain outstanding and owing after liquidation of the company.

In the petition before Justice Muigai, the six said the company has refused to pay and in some instances, issued bouncing cheques. The court also heard that the judgments and decrees obtained by the six have served on the company and have never been set aside nor appealed.

They also revealed that plans to attach the company’s properties have been unsuccessful, leaving them with no other option but to wind up the company.

“It is clear that the company is unable to pay its debts and it is just   and equitable that the company should be wound up in the interest of Justice,” the petitioner’s said.

“That Africa Merchant Insurance Company limited is hereby liquidated under supervision of the official receiver and liquidator,” the Judge directed.

Through Lawyer Karigi Mugendi, the five told the court that the    judgment was entered in their favour in the various courts directing the   company to pay the Petitioners a total sum of Sh 10,235,552 plus costs and interest.

They said their attempts to attach properties of the company to get their money have all come to naught as the auctioneers have returned the warrants unexecuted. The warrants have been attached to the verifying affidavit of Elizabeth Wawira Karithi in support of this petition.

“To date, the decrees remain unsettled and continues to accrue interests and no plausible reason in law has been given by the company for failing to pay the   decretal sum. Indeed the company’s directors have adopted a rather carefree   attitude and appear to abuse the Petitioner’s goodwill in the matter”, they told the court.

They added that the decretal sum is not disputed and has been due and payable in full since the decrees were issued and the statutory notice dated 6th February 2020 served upon the company.  

The company has despite several demands, including insolvency statutory notice dated 6th February 2020 refused or neglected to pay the decretal sum.

WOMAN STOPS BURIAL OF MP MURUNGA OVER PATERNITY TEST.

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BY PHOEBE WANJOHI.

A Nairobi court has stopped the burial of Matungu Member of Parliament Justus Murunga, pending the determination of a paternity dispute filed by a woman claiming to be his mistress.

Senior Principal Magistrate A. N. Makau stopped the burial pending hearing and determination of the petition filed by the mother of two, identified as Agnes Wangui Wambiri.

Wambiri through lawyer Danstan Omari, claims to have two children with the late MP. She accused Christabel Murunga and Grace Murunga, the MP’s widows of conspiring to deny her and her children access and participation in the burial arrangements and the actual burial event.

Wambiri claims she has known the late MP for seven years and they were blessed with two children.

She said she first encountered the deceased in the year 2012 when he was a supervisor at Embakasi Ranching. “I was a businesswoman engaged in rendition of beverages and snacks within the Sewage area in Ruai,” she says in court documents.

She says the deceased told her he lived at Utawala with Christabel and thus, around May 2016 he rented a house for her and their son at Ruai. “The deceased used to pay our monthly rent and maintenance costs for the child by channeling the amounts to my M-pesa numbers,” she claims.

Wambiri, however, claims her relationship with the deceased started to hit the rocks in 2017 when the MP won the Matungu parliamentary seat.