The Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission is going after Magistrate Brian Khaemba for granting Kiambu Governor Ferdinand Waititu and his county finance chief Faith Njeri Ksh500,000 cash bail while on sick leave.
The EACC has petitioned the Judicial Service Commission to investigate the principal magistrate for possible gross misconduct.
The anti-graft agency revealed that on May 23, 2019, Khaemba was supposed to be on sick off but appeared at the Law Courts to hear Waititu’s application and thereafter proceeded with his sick off after granting bail.
According to EACC boss Twalib Mbarak, the fact that Khaemba issued the orders while on sick off, demonstrates that he could be having an interest in the Waitutu case.
“The fact of the Hon Magistrate having to break his sick off, if indeed true, to come and attend to a specific matter, when there were other judicial officers who could have handled it may be an indicator that the Hon Magistrate had an interest,” Mbarak stated in a letter to the JSC.
Some sections of the legal profession have also taken issue with the magistrate’s decision to grant Waititu anticipatory bail noting that Khaemba acted beyond his powers.
For instance, according to Lawyer Donald Kipkorir, only the High Court has exclusive jurisdiction to issue bail.
“Anticipatory bail is an innovative right not in our Constitution but can only be given by the High Court … The alleged anticipatory bail given by a magistrate in Kiambu to Ferdinand Waititu should be torn up and the magistrate dismissed,” Kipkorir tweeted.
Last week, the EACC raided Waititu’s homes and offices and found evidence linking him to Ksh588 million county cash.
The Kiambu Chief is accused of awarding tenders to companies associated with him and his immediate family through whom the millions were allegedly syphoned from public coffers.
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