Governor Mutua in court to stop EACC summons

Machakos Governor Alfred Mutua (FILE)

Machakos Governor Alfred Mutua has moved to court seeking to stop summons against him over alleged violation of procurement laws.

In his petition, Mutua claims that the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission is likely to prefer criminal charges against him, based on an inquiry it had conducted relating to the procurement of motor vehicles.

High court Judge Isaac Lenaola has certified the application as urgent and directed that the matter be heard inter-party Wednesday morning.

He says that his rights to the dignity are likely to be infringed, might be compelled to unjustifiably write statements in relation to alleged violation of procurement law, or get arrested and charged in a court of law with a criminal offence.

He wants the high court to issue orders barring the anti-graft body from summoning or even preferring charges against him until the matter is heard and determined.

The development came as Members of Machakos county Assembly christened ‘Operation Okoa County’ were arraigned before a Machakos court.

The group which has been vocal over the management of County funds appeared before Magistrate Mwangi K. Mwangi. The case however failed to kick off after the Director of Public Prosecution requested that it be deferred for two weeks so as to study the file.

Meanwhile, Former Finance minister Amos Kimunya was charged afresh in a land-fraud case arising from his former portfolio as the minister of Lands and Housing.

The prosecution amended the charge sheet alleging that Kimunya is culpable in the allocation of public land to a private company associated with him.

Kimunya denied the charges and later moved to high court seeking orders to stop the criminal proceedings.

An application filed by Midland Limited seeking to stop the charges was dismissed by the high court. The court ruled that the accused in the matter including Kimunya were charged early this year and had enough time to move to the high court.  The criminal case at the lower court is set to be heard on the 7th and 8th of October 2014.

Elsewhere,  High Court Principal Judge Richard Mwongo has been named to preside over a three-judge bench that will determine whether or not Embu Governor Martin Wambora’s rights were infringed upon during his impeachment.

Justice Mwongo will sit with Justices George Odunga and Weldon Korir following their appointment by Chief Justice Willy Mutunga last week.

Earlier, Justice Odunga had ruled that the two consolidated petitions filed by Wambora and the residents of Embu County disclosed substantial questions of law warranting the constitution of a bench of an uneven number of judges as provided for in Article 165 (4) of the Constitution, and forwarded the file to the CJ.

He added that in the course of the proceedings, the court would be called upon to interpret the interplay between certain articles of international instruments and the Constitution.