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Mumias East MP ordered to pay Sh500,000 debt to businessman

Mumias East MP Peter Salasya.[Benjamin Sakwa, Standard]

A Kakamega businessman has won a case against Mumias East MP Peter Salasya, who was ordered to pay him Sh500,000 plus interest for failing to repay a loan.

The Kakamega Small Claims Court (SCC) dismissed the MP’s counterclaim that he had loaned the businessman Sh1 million, saying it was inadequate, implausible, and dissuasive.

The SCC adjudicator, Gladys Kiama Nashipai, delivered the judgment on Monday afternoon and also ordered the MP to pay the cost of the case, which was resolved in less than 60 days.

“The counterclaim by the respondent (Salasya) was inconsistent. He first claimed that he had personally loaned the claimant (Lutta) Sh1 million, which he was repaying, only to change during the hearing by saying that he loaned the money through a proxy,” Nashipai said in the judgment.

"The proxy in question, one Bernard Kemba, could in turn not even identify the claimant (Lutta) even after an identification parade was carried out in court.”

Nashipai also said that the businessman, Robert Lutta, had bank transfer proof to back his claim that he loaned Salasya the Sh500,000 that he refused to pay, while the MP lacked binding evidence to show that he loaned Lutta the alleged Sh1 million.

Salasya, who was represented by lawyer Webo, asked the court for a 30-day stay on the execution of the judgment, which he was granted.

Lutta, who was represented by lawyer Edwin Wafula, sued the MP on October 23, alleging that he innocently loaned Salasya the amount in December 2022, hoping that he would refund it in two months’ time, but he became elusive.

“Being a friend for so many years, I accepted to advance him the amount on December 13 last year (2022),” Lutta said in his court papers.

“On the material day, I proceeded to the Kenya Commercial Bank-Mumias Branch, where I made a direct transfer of the Sh500,000 to the personal account of the MP, who promised to refund the amount within a period of two months from the date of the transaction.”

 Lutta regretted that the MP in his early 30s had failed, refused, neglected and ignored to refund the amount despite frequent reminders.

He successfully requested the SCC to compel the MP to refund the money with interest and pay for the cost of the case.

Lutta attached the bank transfer details, which showed the money changing the accounts from his to that of the Mumias East MP, done in the KCB branch in the neighbouring Mumias West constituency.

 He had earlier said that he was ready to employ the Civil Procedure Act (Section 38) that allows the imprisonment of debt defaulters to commit the MP to civil jail should he win the case and fail to repay.

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