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Lawyers: Miguna is free to return to Kenya

By Paul Ogemba | Published Thu, February 8th 2018 at 00:00, Updated February 7th 2018 at 22:54 GMT +3
National Super Alliance (Nasa) head of policy David Ndii lawyers Otiende Amollo and Edwin Sifuna arrives at Milimani law courts in Nairobi. [Photo by Boniface Okendo/Standard]

National Super Alliance politician Miguna Miguna is free to return to the country, legal experts have said, arguing that his deportation to Canada was illegal.

According to several lawyers, the fiery politician is a Kenyan by birth and cannot be barred from entering the country any time he wishes.

Mr Miguna spent five days in police custody for his role in the swearing-in of NASA leader Raila Odinga as the 'people’s president' and was subsequently deported on Tuesday night.

“From a legal point of view, Miguna is Kenyan and revocation of his citizenship is not supported by any law. Since he is treated as a citizen, Article 39 of the Constitution is very clear that he has the right to leave, enter, remain in, and reside anywhere in the country,” said lawyer Waikwa Wanyoike.

In the event that he returns and is arrested and charged for illegally entering the country, Mr Wanyoike argued that it would not be possible for the State to sustain such a charge.

Miguna’s lawyers further said he had protection from the High Court, which issued orders stopping the prosecution from charging him with any offence in any Kenyan court until he was produced before Justice Luka Kimaru.

The lawyers said they were in the process of writing a request to the Canadian government not to accept Miguna and instead send him back to Kenya to clear his name on the allegations raised by the Government.

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“The Government made a big mistake by deporting him. It has made the case easier. Miguna can come back to the country any time he wishes, no court can charge him if they arrest him since Justice Kimaru suspended all cases until he is produced before him,” said lawyer Cliff Ombeta.

Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i ordered the deportation of Miguna to Canada on grounds that his presence in the country was against national interest. But Senior Counsel James Orengo dismissed the reasons given by Dr Matiang’i, saying Miguna was a Kenyan citizen by birth and, under Article 12 and Article 16 of the Constitution, does not lose citizenship by acquiring citizenship of another country.

Citizenship revoked

“Miguna was born in Kisumu. Dr Matiang’i needs to be educated and appraised on who is an illegal immigrant and when citizenship can be revoked. Even if he was a Canadian citizen, the deportation should have gone through the Canadian High Commission,” said Mr Orengo.

Makueni Senator Mutula Kilonzo also said the process of Miguna’s deportation was illegal and could not be above the High Court which ordered that he be produced before it.

“Miguna can come back any time because he was not legally deported. The process of deporting a person is stipulated in law but it was not followed. It is a travesty of justice and an abuse of power,” he said

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