BY SAM ALFAN.
National Authority for Campaign against Alcohol and Drug Abuse boss John Mututho is a happy man after the court acquitted him of fraud charges.
The court entered a “not guilty verdict’ on him for the fraud charges he was facing.
The judgment brought to an end a protracted ten-year-old court battle where he was charged with fraud in 41.2 Million shillings tender to do with importation of beds, lockers and curtains for Kenyatta National Hospital.
An ecstatic mututho said it was a conspiracy to curtail his political career.
During the hearing Mututho said the fraud case in a tender for supply of medical equipment to Kenyatta National Hospital (KNH) was brought against him for campaigning against the Government during a constitutional referendum in 2005.
“I was with William Ruto (Deputy President), Uhuru Kenyatta (President) and Raila Odinga (former Prime Minister) in the same camp opposing the Government in the 2005 referendum,” Mututho said.
The former Naivasha MP was giving his defence after Nairobi Magistrate Elena Ndiritu earlier ruled that the prosecution had established a case against him. But Mututho said even the court had questioned how a corruption case was proceeding in the criminal court.
He said that KNH hit headlines about 20-30 years ago for lack of equipment and several challenges. “Several Government interventions were tried until World Bank heard the cry of Kenyans and decided to advance a loan to rehabilitate the hospital,” Mututho said adding that multinationals were also attracted to KNH’s aid among them was USAID, and the body was exempted from tax.
He continued: “All the contracts and jobs advertised under the rehabilitation programme were duty free. And the supply and delivery of 1,600 bedside lockers was advertised.
“For one to qualify for the contracts, a company had to follow due diligence and comply with several local statutes.”
The prosecution called a total of 15 witnesses and presented 35 documentary exhibits to prove the case that Mututho was allegedly involved in fraudulent activities.
KNH was supposed to make duty and VAT exemptions in the arrangements which did not happen. Mututho said the Auditor General gave the contract a clean bill of health.
Speaking shortly to court reporters after his acquittal at Milimani Law an ecstatic mututho said it was a conspiracy to curtail his political career.
He said he had directed his lawyer Cliff Ombeta to files a suit seeking the damages.