BY WEEKEND DESK.
Four Supreme Court judges are facing damning bribery allegations in connection with Wajir Governor election petition judgement that overturned appellate court decision that nullified the election of Mohamed Mohamud.
This after a law firm representing Wajir Gubernatorial election petition losers filed a complaint on Friday with Judicial Service Commission (JSC) seeking the removal of four top Supreme Court Judges over bribery allegations.
Through the law firm of Nchogu Omwanza and Nyasimi Advocates has urged JSC to initiate investigations of the superior court judges namely Mohammed Ibrahim, Jackton Ojwang’ Smokin Wanjala and Njoki Ndung’u for grossly undermine the rule of law and the independence if Judiciary as a whole.
At 16:55 hrs this evening a Petition was filed before the Judicial Service Commission on behalf of the Kenyan people against Hons. Ibrahim, Njoki, Ojwang and Wanjala, for gross misconduct and violation of the constitution @ahmednasirlaw @WehliyeMohamed @dailynation @dkmaraga pic.twitter.com/Nux6QGwkJb
— omwanza ombati (@omwanza) March 8, 2019
“Failure to respect the law or to be able to imagine or perceive accurately the matters at issue in Petition No.7 of 2018 triggers concerns about their integrity in discharge of judicial functions, undermines the rule of law abs the strength of our democratic institutions,” reads the petition.
The petitioners claims that the four judges allegedly receiving Sh 75 Million in september last year for their formed majority decision that upheld the election of Wajir Governor Mohamed Abdi.
During the judgement delivered on February 15,2019 the four come up with a majority decision while Chief Justice David Maraga and Justice Isaac Lenaola gave a dissenting opinion in the matter. However Deputy Chief Justice Philomena Mwilu did not participate in the election petition as she is currently fighting to block her intended prosecution of over criminal charges at the High court.
In the petition two of the four Judges are accused of engaging in improper contacts with governor Abdi’s agents who include some alleged Member of Parliament with intension of receiving bribes to influence the outcome of the appeal by the county boss whose election was nullified by two lower court.
“Corruption and undue influence during the pendency of proceedings before the Supreme Court, there have been corrupt dealings between the Appellant (Mohamed Abdi), through others, and some judges,” claimed the petitioner.
It is alleged that Eldas Member of Parliament Adan Keynan, through his personal relationship with Justice Smokin Wanjala has been the main conduit of bribes to Supreme Court judges.
It also alleged that sometimes in September 2018, an exchange of a Sh 75 million bribe took place at Jomo Kenya International Airport (JKIA) parking base.
“The exchange took place between Sheikh Yunis Ibrahim (cousin to Eldas member of Parliament Keynan of Yunis Osman and Mwiti Advocates, and Justice Smokin Wanjala,” petition states.
The problem with corruption in the Kenyan SUPREME COURT as aptly shown by the judgment of Wajir gubernatorial petition is that corruption is SINGLE SOURCED & is not OPEN & COMPETITIVE. My client was not invited to put his bid & some JUDGES took money from only one party @dkmaraga
— Ahmednasir Abdullahi SC (@ahmednasirlaw) February 15, 2019
According to the Petition, Sheikh Yunis drove to JKIA in a Toyota Landcruiser V8 vehicle with a box packed with Sh 75 million which was in Dollar currency in the vehicle trunk.
It is alleged that at the Airport, Yunis pulled up alongside a Prado with tinted windows.
The driver of the Prado picked the box of money and took towards the Prado to pass it to the occupant of the vehicle. On opening the door of the vehicle, Justice
Wanjala was seated inside the vehicle.
The documents filed before JSC claim that in early January 2019, Governor Abdi instructed the firm of Abdullahi Gitari & Odhiambo LLP), one of his Advocates in petition 7/2019 to urgently sell a property.
It is also alleged that the Property was sold for Sh 60 million, the Vendor being the Appellant’s son. The Property in question is registered under the Government Lands Act; N 48 (Vol) Folio No. 436/41, File No. 422.
“That although the transaction was for sale of land at 60 Million shillings, the Petitioner has information that the money paid was 300 Million shillings,” claims the petition.
The petitioner claims that the purpose of the urgent sale was to raise money for bribes to Supreme Court Judges. During the time this transaction was executed, the delivery of the judgment of the Supreme Court was delayed or stalled.
They further alleged that once the transaction was completed and money paid to the Vendor, a series of money transfers were done by the firm of Abdullahi Gitari & Odhiambo LLP; to the following persons Mohamed Hassan Mire- bank account at a local Bank, Dayib Ali Noor- bank account at a local Bank abd Yussuf Mohamed Omar- bank accounts at a local Bank.
The alleged transactions which were done on or about the week of February 4 and 7 , 2019 were meant to completely seal the deal.
On February 11,2019 at between 3-4 p.m. at a local bank at Eastleigh, the son of the incumbent governor withdrew the sum of sh15 million which was given to MP Adan Keynan to pass on to Justice Smokin Wanjala. The money was withdrawn from an account of a company associated with the son of the Petitioner.
“On February 8, 2019, at a local bank, through the Account of a law firm that does considerable work for the County Government of Wajir and the Petitioner; substantial sums of monies were withdrawn for purposes of treating the judges and buying their influence,” the petition further alleges.
They alleged that through the above persons, the proceeds of the sale of land were then channeled to Justice Njoki Ndung’u and Justice Smokin Wanjala to obtain a judgement favourable to the Appellant and to corrupt the streams of the justice system.
The petitioner further that the Governor Mohamed Abdi has been to the Safaricom VIP Centre more than 40 times between mid-January and end-February 2019 to try and tamper with call records or erase the trail of communication between parties associated with him and the judges and or their associates.
It is alleged that in early March 2019, Kheira received a call from 07221****7 and the caller threatened to swear an affidavit detailing the corruption and go public unless he received Sh 2 million.
They claimed that the above-named Judges demonstrated lack of impartiality; the elements of which include, an objective determination of the matter before the Court, fair and just analysis of the matter before the Court, a fair and just application of the law to the facts and equal treatment to litigant.
They claimed that actions of the named judges cannot be explained away as judicial fallibility or mistakes.
The petitioner prays that Judicial Service Commission be pleased to determine the conduct of the four Judges that amounted to a violation of the constitution, gross misconduct and breach of the Judicial Code of Conduct and Ethics and Oath of Office; and consequent to this determination initiates the necessary procedures for their removal for office.
“The Judicial Service Commission be pleased to act in terms of article 168(2), (3) and (4) of the Constitution to recommend to the President of the Republic of Kenya to establish a Tribunal to investigate and make its determinations on the infractions disclosed in this Petition,” urges the petitioner.
He also wants the relationship and networks between Justice Njoki Ndung’u and Tarbaj member of parliament Mohamed Elmi be investigated the relationship and networks between MP Adan Keynan and Justice Smokin Wanjala and other Supreme Court Judges be investigated.
He further wants Sheikh Yunis Ibrahim be investigated for his roles, the land transaction through which money was raised and contacts or networks to supreme court judges between August 2018 and March 2019.
The petitioner wants a multi-agency investigative team be constituted to investigate the persons, contacts and networks between the phone numbers mentioned above, and the transactions between the disclosed persons at the banks mentioned above.
The Appeal was filed on May 7 2018 and a determination was delivered on February 15 2019 and more than 10 months since the filing of Application for stay of the judgment of the Court of Appeal.
“The perverse outcome intended by the majority by mere subterfuge of jurisdictional misinterpretation, resulted in the ‘election’ of a candidate who, by a ton of inconvertible evidence is not qualified to be governor. A court that hammers, twists and bends the law to bury what is as plain as daylight is a forum of injustice, a threat to liberty and an enemy of the constitution,” added the petition.
He claimed that this conduct coupled with the disclosed instances of corruption and improper communication with parties to a judicial proceeding, grossly undermines the rule of law and the independence of the Judiciary as a whole and the disclosed abuse of judicial independence by the named judges threatens the integrity of the judiciary as a whole and the harm alleged is incurable; except by removal from office.
On January 12, 2018 justice Alfred Mabeya High court nullified Governor Abdi’s election following a petition by his opponent Abdullahi dated September 6,2017seeking to challenge the results of the election.
Justice A. Mabeya found and held that: the Governor did not have the requisite academic qualifications, to vie in the elections, and the IEBC committed several irregularities and illegalities which affected both the credibility and result of the election