Mike Mbuvi Sonko, the former Nairobi Governor, and 16 others have been acquitted in a Kes.357 million corruption case.
Senior Principal Magistrate Eunice Nyutu, overseeing anti-corruption proceedings on Wednesday, stated that the prosecution failed to present enough evidence to prove the case.
The Magistrate pointed out numerous frustrations from the prosecution, stating that it mishandled and abandoned its own case.
She urged Parliament to enact laws that hold Public Prosecutors accountable for neglecting their duties.
“The prosecution which called six witnesses did not tender evidence to warrant the court to put the accused on their defence,” Ms Nyuttu ruled.
19 Graft Charges
In the case, Sonko, along with 16 others, including private liability companies, had been accused of embezzling public funds amounting to Kes.357 million from Nairobi County during his tenure as the County Governor.
A total of 19 graft charges had been filed against all 17 accused persons.
Other accused individuals in the case comprised chairman of Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) Anthony Mwaura, Peter Mbugua Kariuki, Patrick Mwangangi, Ndaka, Andrew Nyasiego, Lawrence Mwangi Mukuru, businessman Antony Otieno Ombok alias Jamal, Arbab Auto Limited, ROG Security Ltd, and High Energy Petroleum Ltd.
Sonko, Mr. Mwaura and his wife Ms. Rose Njeri, along with others and their companies, faced charges of allegedly embezzling the funds through dubious contracts.
Mwaura, who at the time was was responsible for making policy decisions at KRA, faced charges of conspiring to corruptly embezzle Kes.357 million from the city-county government. He allegedly committed this offense between May 2018 and March 2019.
In November 2022, Mwaura was appointed as the chairperson of the KRA. Upon assuming the role, he functioned in both the capacities of the CEO and chairman, similar to an executive chairman in private companies, due to the absence of a substantive Commissioner-General at the KRA.
Mr. Mwaura, along with his companies, Hardi Enterprises Limited and Toddy Civil Engineering Company, also faced charges of money laundering by allegedly concealing an amount of Kes.55.8 million received from the Nairobi City County government between October 2018 and March 2019.