Haji’s bid to gag media in NYS graft case thwarted

Thursday, May 20th, 2021 00:00 |
Kirinyaga Governor Anne Waiguru. FILE PHOTO.

Attempts by the Director of Public Prosecution Noordin Haji to have Governor Anne Waiguru testify in camera against his former Principal Secretary Peter Mangiti and 24 others in the Sh791 million National Youth Service (NYS) case flopped yesterday.

Milimani Chief Magistrate Francis Andayi dismissed the DPP’s request to have the governor testify behind closed doors, saying it lacks merit.

Haji, through Senior Principal Prosecutor Jackson Makori, had made an application seeking to have the court bar the media from covering Waiguru as she sheds light on the loss of millions of shillings during her tenure as the Devolution Cabinet Secretary between 2014-2015.

Makori argued that the media might misreport or take Waiguru’s testimony out of context.

Raises objections

 “In light of what you have said, we have our witness (Waiguru) and we are ready to process, because of space, our witness may take a bit of time due to our testimony.

We are requesting that the court bars the media, reasons being that we are apprehensive that some of the testimony may be taken out of context or misreported,” Makori said.

The governor was expected to testify against Mangiti, former NYS Director General Nelson Githinji and a businessmen who engaged NYS in various transactions or deals to supply items at the facility.

 In 2016, Waiguru was, however, cleared by the Ethics and Anti-corruption Commission after claiming that she had acted as a whistleblower. 

“The commission has conducted investigations on various allegations touching on the National Youth Service and the Ministry of Devolution and National Planning.

So far, our investigations have not established any evidence to warrant an adverse recommendation against the former Cabinet Secretary, Anne Mumbi Waiguru,” the letter read.

However, the defence team vehemently opposed the application by the DPP saying the proceedings have always been reported and conducted in an open court. 

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