Akaranga fights to stop ar­rest for skip­ping Sen­ate hear­ing

He was out of the coun­try and has sent rep­re­sen­ta­tives, in­clud­ing the county lawyer, to in­form the com­mit­tee that the mat­ter had been re­solved by the Vi­higa as­sem­bly

The Star (Kenya) - - Politics Judiciary - JILLO KADIDA @jka­dida

Vi­higa Gov­er­nor Moses Akaranga is in court seek­ing to stop his ar­rest and pros­e­cu­tion over fail­ure to hon­our sum­mons to ap­pear be­fore the Sen­ate.

He says the Sen­ate does not have pow­ers to sum­mon him over a mat­ter that has al­ready been con­sid­ered by the county as­sem­bly.

Akaranga was sum­moned on Septem­ber 27 to ap­pear be­fore the Sen­ate Stand­ing Com­mit­tee on Fi­nance on Oc­to­ber 11 to ex­plain how the county in­curred a Sh2.5 bil­lion debt. He did not ap­pear be­fore the com­mit­tee as he was out of the coun­try.

The county government sent its lawyer and other officers to ap­pear be­fore the Sen­ate and ex­plain his ab­sence and also reg­is­ter an ob­jec­tion to the sum­mons.

How­ever, the county of­fi­cials were de­nied au­di­ence af­ter the Sen­ate in­sisted that it re­quires Akaranga to ap­pear in per­son.

The Sen­ate then in­structed IG Joseph Boin­net and DPP Ke­ri­ako To­biko to ar­rest and charge Akaranga for fail­ing to hon­our the sum­mons.

Akaranga says these in­struc­tions were given with­out con­sid­er­ing the fact that there is a case in court over the same mat­ter.

The gov­er­nor be­lieves that the sum­mons have no ba­sis in law and are un­con­sti­tu­tional.

He ac­cused the Sen­ate of act­ing in ex­cess of its au­thor­ity and ju­ris­dic­tion as it has no such pow­ers.

The gov­er­nor said the House was usurp­ing the role of the court in its con­sti­tu­tional man­date to ad­ju­di­cate on such dis­putes.

The county as­sem­bly had dealt with the is­sue and a ma­jor­ity of the mem­bers dis­missed a re­port in ef­fect ab­solv­ing the gov­er­nor of any wrong­do­ing.

The stand­ing or­ders for the Vi­higa as­sem­bly, which pro­vides the pro­ce­dure for pre­sen­ta­tion and de­ter­mi­na­tion of pe­ti­tions, do not pro­vide for ap­peal to the Sen­ate, he said.

He said he has un­suc­cess­fully raised these is­sues with the Sen­ate three times.

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