Former Finance Minister Amos Kimunya with his Lawyer Mwaniki Gachoka outside Milimani law courtS building at Milimani law courts after he was charged a fresh over office abuse Tuesday 08/07/2014.(Photo/File)
BY SAM ALFAN.
Former finance Cabinet Minister Amos Kimunya will know whether fraud charges he is facing over illegal transfer of a 25-acre government land in Nyandarua will be terminated next year in March.
High Court had earlier declined to suspend the trial of former Lands minister Amos Kimunya and instead ruled that the case be expedited.
Kimunya is charged alongside the director of Land Adjudication and Settlement Lillian Njenga and Midlands Ltd and its chairman Junghae Wainaina.
They are facing charges of transferring 25 acres of government land in Nyandarua county nine years ago.
Midlands and Wainaina moved to court seeking to quash their prosecution on grounds that the charges are malicious and meant to deny them the right to acquire property.
He denied a charge stating that on June 30, 2005, at Ardhi House in Nairobi while employed in public service as the minister of Lands and Housing, he abused his authority to “confer a benefit on Midlands Limited by causing the company to be allocated a public plot identified as Nyandarua/Njabini/5852 while knowing that the said land parcel was not available for alienation.”
Kimunya was also charged with failing to disclose his vested interests in the land deal.The Attorney General though State Counsel Emmanuel Bitta opposed the application by Kimunya for wrongly enjoining him in the proceedings since his office has no role in criminal cases.
It was his argument that the former Kipipiri legislator should seek to prove his case before the Magistrates’ Court because orders he is seeking are coercive in nature.
“The applicant has not demonstrated incapacity or unfairness on the part of the chief magistrate’s court to deal with the matter fairly,’’ he argued.
The State Counsel went on say that Kimunya is raising a defense to the charges before the
prosecution makes its case.
“It is in public interest that the criminal proceedings be sustained and I urge the court to find the application premature and speculative,’’ he said.
However, Kimunya’s lawyer claimed that the criminal charges framed against his client have
ulterior motives. He questioned why it has taken Ethics and Anti Corruption Commission (EACC) and the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) 11 years to bring Kimunya to court.
Justice Korir heard the argument that his prosecution was delayed because he occupied
a Cabinet position post does not hold any water.
The advocate claimed that Kimunya has been isolated by the EACC and DPP and urged the
court to find that the Magistrate’s Court has nothing to do with the land in question.
Kimunya is charged alongside the director of Land Adjudication and Settlement Lillian Njenga, Midlands Ltd and its chairman Junghae Wainaina.
They are facing charges of transferring a 25- acre government land in Nyandarua County
nine years ago. Midlands and Wainaina are also separately seeking to quash their prosecution on grounds that the charges are malicious and meant to
deny them the right to acquire property.
Justice Korir said that he will deliver his judgment on March 4 after he finished hearing submissions in a judicial review case by Kimunya contesting criminal charges leveled against him early this year.