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Salasya fails to prevent auction of car, slapped with Sh10,000 court fine

Western
Mumias East MP Peter Salasya makes a call in front of his vehicle that has been targeted by auctioneers. [Benjamin Sakwa, Standard]

The Kakamega Small Claims Court (SCC) has allowed a businessman to proceed to auction Mumias East MP Peter Salasya’s gold-coloured Land Cruiser, throwing aside the MP’s application that sought to stop the process.

The court’s adjudicator Caroline Cheruiyot at the same time ordered the MP to pay the businessman, Robert Lutta, Sh10,000 as cost on litigating the MP’s application filed under certificate of urgency to try to bar the auction.

She noted that the MP, who tabled one of his pay slips indicating he earned Sh3,222, was simply abusing the court process when he had capacity to pay Sh500,000 plus interests that the court ruled he should pay Lutta in November last year.

“Lutta stated that upon the entry of judgment Salasya sought and was granted stay of execution and that he has never engaged him nor his advocate with a view of settling the sum; and from his demeanor he will not settle the decretal sum unless compelled to pay in lumpsum,” said Cheruiyot in a ruling delivered Friday evening.

“It is the court’s finding that the auction decree was extracted on January 18 and Salasya has since not paid any sums as a sign of good faith despite his proposal to settle the same in monthly installments of Sh50,000.

“The court finds the said proposed amount (Sh50,000) would take close to one year to settle which is neither fair nor reasonable. Further, considering other factors such as the conduct of Salasya as stated by Lutta and Salasya’s financial position and status, the court finds that he is undeserving of the prayers sought.”

Salasya  moved to the court praying to settle the outstanding debt to Lutta in small installments of Sh50,000 which Lutta, through his lawyer, Edwin Wafula have disagreed with. 

Lutta rebutted, saying that despite possessing the means to settle the debt promptly, Salasya has opted for a protracted payment schedule aimed at “taking the court process for granted.” 

He said such a maneuver not only demonstrated a lack of integrity on the part of the politician, but also highlighted a broader issue of abuse of power and privilege within the political sphere. 

At the heart of the contentious dispute lies a contentious disagreement over the terms of payment for a Sh500,000 soft loan Lutta gave the MP on December 13, 2022 which the Small Claims Court ruled last November the MP should repay. 

The legal showdown, which has been months in the making, has seen both parties engage in a war of words, with accusations of bad faith and financial irresponsibility flying from both directions. 

Lutta asserted that Salasya’s insistence on incremental payments was a thinly veiled attempt to evade full accountability and exploit legal loopholes for personal gain.

 

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