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Ngilu lawyers kicked out as ouster bid gets messy

By Philip Muasya | June 30th 2020

Lawyer Morris Kimuli (on a wheelchair) being evacuated by an ambulance after he was injured at Kitui county assembly on June 29, 2020. [Philip Muasya, Standard]

One of Kitui Governor Charity Ngilu’s lawyers was yesterday injured in a fracas that erupted at the County Assembly as he sought to represent her in her impeachment hearing. 

Morris Kimuli was leading two other lawyers to represent the governor, who had been summoned by the assembly for grilling before the impeachment motion could be tabled.

The summons was issued long before the assembly was temporarily stopped by a court order from tabling the motion.

However, the impeachment motion could not be discussed yesterday as scheduled because of the conservatory order that Ngilu obtained from the High Court on Thursday last week.

According to a communication from the assembly, neither the governor nor her legal team had any business appearing at the assembly because the matter was not being discussed.

However, the lawyers insisted they had to go inside the chambers because there was no official letter cancelling the summons. This resulted in a shouting match between the legal team and the orderlies.

“You invite the governor here and you do not want her lawyers to appear. There is no letter of cancellation...or you want to say she did not attend? We have to go in,” Kimuli shouted.

At this point, the assembly orderlies lost their cool and forcibly grabbed the lawyers and frog-marched them out of the gate.

Kimuli, who was knocked against the gate, sought treatment for minor injuries at the county referral hospital, about a kilometre away.

“I feel a bit of pain on the back and my right arm. It is strange how they deny us access yet they had summoned the governor,” he said at the hospital.

Meanwhile, the MCAs have agreed to obey the court order that bars them from tabling the impeachment motion until an inter-partes hearing scheduled for July 6 is conducted.

The order was granted by Justice Weldon Korir, giving Ngilu a temporary reprieve.

However, the MCAs have vowed to go on with the motion once the court matter is concluded.

“It is a temporary disappointment but we are determined. We are a lawful House and we will obey the court order. I want to urge my colleagues and our supporters to stay firm because we have enough grounds to impeach the governor,” Majority Leader Peter Kilonzo, who proposed the motion, said. 

Yatta/Kwa Vonza MCA John Kisangau, who is elected on Ngilu’s Narc party, is also at the forefront to make sure she leaves office.

“She is my party leader but has gone against her campaign manifesto. She does her things without approval of the assembly and that is why we are determined to take her home,” said Kisangau, who served as minority leader before resigning.

In seeking to remove Ngilu from office, the MCAs have a host of allegations, including gross violation of the Constitution, questionable awarding of county tenders, undermining the assembly’s authority and failure to account for public funds.

Governor Ngilu has however maintained she is the target of a witch-hunt by the majority Wiper MCAs for selfish political reasons with blessings of the party leadership. 

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