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DPP wants Muite out of fertiliser case

By Paul Ogemba | April 25th 2019
Director of Public Prosecution Noordin Haji.

The public prosecutor wants lawyer Paul Muite disqualified from a case in which he is representing a businessman who is charged with attempted murder for allegedly releasing  contaminated fertiliser into the market.

Muite's client, Benson Oduor, is charged alongside Kenya Bureau of Standards (Kebs) Managing Director Charles Ongwae.

Director of Public Prosecution Noordin Haji, through State prosecutor Victor Owiti, argued that Mr Muite had represented Kebs in other disputes and was therefore privy to confidential information and witness statement.

He added that this was likely to interfere with the criminal case.

“Mr Muite appears in Kebs' list of long-term retained lawyers and cannot appear in this matter which the agency has an interest in. It is a case of conflict of interest and the court should disqualify him from representing the accused person,” said Mr Owiti.

But Muite in a rejoinder accused the DPP of using the application to delay the case and frustrate court orders for retesting of the 3,500 tonnes of fertiliser.

He wondered why the prosecutor had waited for one year to file the application for his disqualification considering he has represented Oduor since July 2018.

He swore that he has never been on the Kebs' list of long-term lawyers, and that the matters in which he represented the State agency was totally different. “The application is made in bad faith (and its) full of lies,” said Muite.

 The application will be determined tomorrow.

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