Big win as anti-graft court freezes assets in NYS case
In a landmark ruling that strikes a blow to the fight against graft, a High Court judge allowed the Asset Recovery Agency (ARA) to freeze multi-million-shilling property belonging to a junior National Youth Service (NYS) officer and his family.
The assets estimated at more than Sh150 million, jointly owned by Evans Wafula, head of the Mechanical and Transport department at NYS, his wife Sylvia Ajiambo Onguru, daughter Millicent Matingi Kundu and their company Mojisola Limited, are suspected to be proceeds of crime.
Delivering her ruling yesterday, Justice Mumbi Ngugi of the Anti-Corruption Court in Nairobi, granted the agency orders stopping Wafula, his family and agents from selling, interfering with or transferring any of the property.
“A preservation order is hereby granted against the respondents, their employees, agents or any other person acting on their behalf from dealing in any manner with the listed property and parcels of land pending determination of the suit,” she ruled.
The frozen assets, include a property valued at Sh90 million in the upmarket Runda estate, Nairobi, a Sh16 million piece of land in Kasarani, a plot in Nakuru East valued at Sh25 million, a four-storey residential building in Njoro and 40 acres of land in Trans Nzoia.
Others are two plots in Kitale and one in Nairobi valued at Sh16 million and Sh6 million, respectively, and a palatial home in Trans Nzoia as well as a lorry, KCF 286T, registered in Nyambura’s name.
An affidavit filed in court by ARA investigator Fredrick Musyoki established that Kundu is the beneficial owner of the assets, which he concealed and disguised ownership by registering them as either jointly owned by himself, his wives, children, associate or companies owned by his daughter and that the said properties were acquired fraudulently using NYS funds.
Kundu is one of the 37 suspects charged in May 2018 with conspiracy to defraud NYS more than Sh468 million.
He is charged alongside former NYS Director-General Richard Ndubai, his deputy Nicholas Ahere and former Youth and Gender Affairs Principal Secretary Lillian Omollo and the Ngirita family from Naivasha.