BY SAM ALFAN.
It is a reprieve for Mombasa Principal Magistrate Kagoni Edgar Matsigulu in drug case.
This is after High Court ordered immediate release of the Principal Magistrate Kagoni Edgar Matsigulu pending hearing and determination of the case.
The judge also released the magistrate on a bond of 100,000 or a cash bail of 20,000. The amount should be deposited with court registrar.
Mombasa high Court Judge Reuben Nyakundi also ordered Edgar not to be charged with any criminal charges.
The judge also ruled that Edgar should not be charged with criminal proceedings based on recommendation of the Director of Criminal Investigations George KINOTI to DPP Noordin Haji.
“Plea shall not be taken and criminal proceedings shall not be undertaken nor progressed with based on the recommendation of the DCI to DPP to charge Magistrate Edgar and the consequential decision of the DPP contained in the press statement dated on September 7,2019 to charge Kagoni Edgar with obstruction of justice c/s 117 of penal code, aiding the commission of an offence c/s 8(c) of the Narcotic drugs and psychotropic substance control Act or any other charge that may be founded on the facts of the Edgar’s conduct as a judicial officer in Mombasa Chief Magistrate court criminal case number 468 of 2018′, ordered the judge.
Kenya Judges and Magistrate Association Secretary General Derrick Kutto welcomed the high court court decision.
“I welcome the decision by the High Court to stop the attempted malicious prosecution of hon Kagoni, Principal Magistrate, after KMJA moved to court. The brazen attack on the decisional independence of the Judiciary and judicial officers, by the DPP, is overwhelming. KMJA will continue protecting the independence of its members. We believe in the rule of law”, said SG Kutto.
This is after Kenya Judges and Magistrates Association filed a case seeking to block Director of public prosecution from charging Mombasa Principal Magistrate Kagoni Edgar Matsigulu.
The association through lawyer Danstan Omari and Shadrack Wambui wants the court to issue a conservatory order restraining DPP from charging the magistrate pending hearing and determination of the application.
Under certificate of urgency, the association also seek orders to stop Mombasa Principal Magistrate Edgar from taking plea in any criminal court until the case is determined.
The association argue that unless the court moves with speed and stop arraignment and charging of Magistrate Edgar on the basis of the DPP’s spurious allegations , the independence of Judges and Magistrates and all other judicial officers will be threatened by the DPP.
Article 160 (5) state that, A member of the Judiciary is not liable in an action or suit in respect of anything done or omitted to be done in good faith in the lawful performance of a judicial function.
KMJA true that they are concerned by threat to liberty of one of it members magistrate Edgar who is a judicial officer serving as a Principal Magistrate at Mombasa Law court.
But between June 28 and July 26, the said exhibit of 10.002kg heroin which the embattled magistrate had ordered to be kept under lock and key in the exhibit tore was reported missing.
“The sudden disappearance of the exhibits, the Mombasa Law Court chief magistrate Makori filed a complaint and requested Directorate of Criminal Investigation to institute investigations in order to establish the person culpable “, KMJA claim in the court documents.
Last week Director of criminal investigation released a press statement as inquiry into allegations of theft and reckless handling of approximately 10.002kg of heroin valued 30,066,000 million and various foreign currency valued over 600,000 kept as exhibit at Mombasa law chief magistrate.