Mu­tua to face trial over sus­pect pur­chase of 16 county ve­hi­cles

County chief ac­cused of abuse of of­fice over ir­reg­u­lar pur­chase of ve­hi­cles for CEC and am­bu­lance ser­vices. Fails to stop DPP, anti-graft agency and po­lice from ar­rest­ing him

The Star (Kenya) - - Politics Ministries & Judiciary - CA­ROLE MAINA @mainaCa­role

The prose­cu­tion can now charge Machakos Gover­nor Al­fred Mu­tua with fraud­u­lent pur­chase of 16 mo­tor ve­hi­cles for county Ex­ec­u­tive Com­mit­tee mem­bers.

Yes­ter­day, the High Court dis­missed a pe­ti­tion Mu­tua filed to chal­lenge his prose­cu­tion, say­ing it lacked merit. The gover­nor had ob­tained tem­po­rary or­ders stop­ping the DPP, the EACC and po­lice from ar­rest­ing, charg­ing or prose­cut­ing him.

Jus­tice Ed­ward Muri­ithi, who read the judg­ment on be­half of Jus­tice Isaac Le­naola, said Mu­tua failed to prove his rights were vi­o­lated or will be in­fringed by the in­tended prose­cu­tion.

The judge re­jected Mu­tua’s ar­gu­ments that he had not been given ad­e­quate in­for­ma­tion about in­ves­ti­ga­tions into the pur­chase. Muri­ithi said Mu­tua was duly in­formed and took part in the probe.

He said the gover­nor in­ter­acted with the is­sues and pro­cesses con­cern­ing in­ves­ti­ga­tions by the Ethics and Anti-Cor­rup­tion Com­mis­sion and was, at all times, up­dated on the progress.

“Prior to his state­ments un­der cau­tion, he un­der­took an in­ter­view with the EACC and recorded a state­ment. Upon the con­clu­sion of the in­ves­ti­ga­tions, he recorded the state­ment un­der cau­tion,” the judge said. Muri­ithi said he is sat­is­fied Mu­tua knew the “na­ture and scope of the in­ves­ti­ga­tions and his rights to ac­cess in­for­ma­tion were not vi­o­lated”.

The gover­nor sought to stop his prose­cu­tion, say­ing it was the CEC that for­mu­lated the pol­icy for buy­ing the ve­hi­cles in 2013. He said he had noth­ing to do with it be­cause he is not the ac­count­ing of­fi­cer. Mu­tua said the Tran­si­tion Author­ity ap­proved the pur­chase and the Fi­nance depart­ment is re­spon­si­ble for ac­count­ing and fi­nan­cial mat­ters.

/ FILE

A Subaru Out­back for of­fi­cial use by Machakos county ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee mem­bers

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