Former Kenya Power managing director Ben Chumo before court.


Former Kenya Power managing director Ben Chumo has been ordered to  appear before the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) at 2pm for  recording statement over missing documents in a graft case he and 14 others are charged.

This is in relation to the disappearance of documents in his graft cases on purchase of the fault transformers.

Dr. Chumo is to be accompanied by his lawyer Moses Kurgat.

The magistrate made the directive after Dr Chumo through his lawyer Katwa Kigen protested over arrests of former KP managers over the missing documents.

This is after the investigating officer through the prosecution urged principal magistrate Felix Kombo that he appears to record a further statement.

Chumo’s advocate together with other defense counsels expressed their fear in court that given that today is Friday Chumo and others might be rearrested to spend weekend in custody over the weekend a concern that forced the magistrate to put down a specific order of appearance timings. Defense also complained to the court that the accused persons are being frustrated an issue that magistrate noted.

The case will be mentioned on 14 November 2018 for the prosecution to table a report on the ongoing probe over disappearance of crucial documents in the case.

The DPP informed the court some documents have so far been recovered.

Three people, among them former company secretary Beatrice Meso were arrested on Monday and presented in court over the missing documents. Ms Meso and former head of supply chain John Ombui as well as Ruth Oyile, were taken to court yesterday but did not plead to charges of conspiracy to defeat justice. The court also rejected plans to detain them for seven days to enable the police complete investigations.

Senior principal magistrate Kennedy Cheruiyot directed the three to deposit cash bail of Sh300,00 each to secure their release, and accompany the investigating officer to their former offices at Stima Plaza, for retrieval of some documents needed by the prosecution.

Yesterday, the court heard that the police have managed to retrieve the missing documents and they will file a report in court on November 14, during the mention of the case.

The trial of former managing director Ben Chumo, his successor Ken Tarus and 13 others was set for hearing for the whole week but stalled after crucial documents went missing.

In one of the reports, the power utility company acknowledges that some of the transformers failed after installation and the suppliers acknowledged some of the faults identified during the inspection and acceptance testing.

Mr Kombo allowed for adjournment saying justice would be better served if the state was granted the opportunity to make the best case it can and the accused persons given the opportunity to respond to the best case.

A total of 34 witnesses are set to testify in the matter. Other accused persons are Mr Peter Mungai, Mr Joshua Mutua, Mr Abubakar Swaleh, Mr Samuel Ndirangu, Mr Stanley Mutwiri, Mr Benson Muriithi, Mr Peter Mwicigi and Mr Ombui.

The charges state that they led to losses amounting to Sh408 million, at KPLC by procuring substandard transformers.

It is alleged that they conspired to commit an economic crime on diverse dates between August 3, 2013 and June 12, 2018 when they procured transformers worth approximately Sh408,533,221 from a company known as M/s Muwa Trading. They further denied abuse of office and failure to comply with procurement laws.

Muwa directors James Njenga, his wife Grace Wanjira and son John Anthony Mungai are accused of fraudulently acquiring Sh202 million by supplying substandard transformers