Itumbi’s attempt to prosecute Matiang’i falters as court dismisses application

An attempt by former State House digital director and blogger Dennis Itumbi to prosecute interior cabinet secretary Fred Matiang’i over the Ruaraka land saga hit a snag Friday after his application was dismissed by the courts.

Chief magistrate Douglas Ogoti dismissed the application to institute private prosecution against Matiang’i saying it lacked constitutional and statutory threshold. According to Ogoti, exhibits presented in the application did not meet the admissibility test as prescribed in the Evidence Act.

“Itumbi application failed to meet the legal threshold that would give this court necessary authority to grant him permission in order to initiate private proceedings against the CS. He didn’t explain how he accessed the info or documents in his affidavit” ruled Ogoti.

Itumbi whose earlier attempt to have the magistrate recuse himself from the case failed to materialize says he will be heading to the high court.

Itumbi had filed an application at the Anti-Corruption Court listing Matiang’i as the first respondent in the matter where he claimed that Kenyan taxpayers lost Ksh. 1.5 billion.

Itumbi alleged that Dr Matiang’i who was in charge of the Ministry of Education at the time, initiated the process of compulsory acquisition of part of L.R No. 7879/4 situated in Ruaraka for the benefit of two government learning institutions namely; Drive-In Primary School and Ruaraka High School.

In the application, Itumbi claimed Matiang’i ignored the recommendations in the Quality Assurance and Standard Investigative Report that advised that the land where the two government learning institutions were situated was public land and that the two companies Afrison Export-Import Limited and Huelands Limited had no basis to be compensated.

He had also named the Director of Public Prosecutions as the second respondent in the 193-page affidavit for allegedly failing to prosecute the CS over the same while the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission had been enjoined as an interested party.

In 2018, businessman Francis Mburu, was paid Ksh.1.5 billion by the Ministry of Education, through the National Land Commission, as compensation for the 13.5 acres parcel of land, on which the two schools are built. The controversial pay-out was flagged by then Auditor General Edward Ouko whereas the high court last year ruled that the property was public land.



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