Murathe, Atwoli caught up in Jirongo's money tussle with EACC

Documents tabled at the anti-graft agency show the Jirongo land transaction dates back to the time his companies secured credit from the collapsed Postbank Credit to execute projects awarded by the Kanu government.

He had sued the Nairobi City Government for illegally occupying his land and entered a consent for which he would be paid for the land. Murathe spent more than two hours at the anti-graft agency offices and emerged to say he did not know why he was being taken through a media-publicised investigation by the EACC. In a statement, the politician said EACC had asked him to explain a Sh25 million amount paid to him around July 23, 2020 through a law firm for a company called Kuza Farms Limited owned by Jirongo.

He admitted receiving the money in two instalments of Sh18 million and Sh7 million around July 23, 2020.

Kuza Farms had paid the money from Sh250 million it received from Nairobi City County as payments for the land where AEF Reuben Primary School, a dispensary and a police station stand on.

Ruto opponent

The Jubilee politician, who was a fierce opponent of the candidacy of President William Ruto, was summoned by the agency on October 28.

"We think this is a publicised investigation premised on malicious grounds," he told journalists after arriving on a dark chauffeured Mercedez Benz. "Otherwise who called you here?"

EACC spokesman Yassin Umaro said Jirongo was set to appear before the EACC earlier yesterday but his lawyers objected saying he did not wish to participate in the statement writing surrounded by the "drama" of the media spotlight.
"Our client will now only give his statement in the privacy and security of his office at Westlands or our offices," the lawyers wrote to EACC.

"To our dismay, we found a battery of journalists ready with cameras, microphones and other equipment right in front of your entrance," the lawyers wrote to EACC. "It is clear they were there at your invitation specifically to cover this as a news item."

Like Murathe, he claimed that was an infringement on his right to privacy and done in bad faith.
According to Murathe, the amounts received were partial settlement of a debt owed to him by Jirongo who is the Managing Director of Kuza Farms and Allied.

"This is my full statement on the circumstances leading to my receipt of funds and I have no knowledge or involvement on the purported conspiracy to defraud the county," he said.

Adding that he had since perused some documents relating to the land matter and confirmed the source of the funds.
Murathe told journalists after writing his statement that Jirongo had owed him Sh61 million in the debt he was trying to clear.
"It was a simple straightforward matter, he owed me a debt and he made steps to pay back," he said.

Settling debts

He attached Jirongo's statement on the same in which he acknowledges receipt of Sh250 million by the county government in July 2020.
He explains how the Sh250 million was distributed to settle his many debts including Sh110 million paid to a law firm to settle liabilities owned to a bank and other clients.

His firm he claims still owed creditors Sh118 million.
Atwoli, who was also summoned over the same matter, admitted to receiving money from Jirongo and like Murathe, he said it was for debt repayment.

Speaking through his Personal Assistant, Atwoli admitted to receiving Sh61 million from Jirongo out of a friendly loan of Sh100 million.

He also sent journalists transcripts of media coverage of his civil case against Jirongo including an October 16, 2017 order by Justice Francis Tuiyot ordering the former Lugari MP to pay the debt.

Sources said another person summoned by the EACC was a former city-county official.