Court denies NCPB boss request to stop re-arrest

 

National Cereals and Produce Board MD Joseph Kimote when he appeared before the National Assembly Agriculture Committee over the fake Fertilizer at Parliament on April 8, 2024. [Boniface Okendo, Standard]

The High Court in Nairobi has dismissed a plea by embattled National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB) chief executive Joseph Kimote not to be re-arrested.

Justice Nixon Sifuna said that Kimote's fears alone could not move the court to intervene.

Kimote told the court he had information that the Directorate of Criminal Investigations would arrest him for a second time.

He also claimed to have received threats emanating from a case on substandard fertiliser.

“The threats have persisted and show no signs of stopping, and the applicant is apprehensive that only urgent action by this honourable court shall stop this injustice,” argued Kimote.

The NCPB boss has sued the DCI, Inspector General of Police  and the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP).

Kimote was arrested last week and charged alongside NCPB company secretary John Kiplangat and Development Committee chairman John Mbaya.

The DPP also pressed charges against 51 Capital Kenya and SBL Innovative Manufacturers, two companies alleged to be the suppliers of 139,688 bags of the substandard fertiliser.

Kimote, Kiplangat and Mbaya were accused of conspiring to defraud Kenyans more than Sh209 million.

According to the charges, they plotted to defraud farmers by selling 139,688 bags of soil amendment and conditioner purporting it to be genuine fertiliser.

Yesterday, Kimote told the court that he was arrested on April 29 and spent three days at Muthaiga Police Station.

He said he was charged and released on a Sh1 million cash bail on May 2.

Kimote, however, argued that he got wind that the police were coming after him over related claims or over his role as the NCPB boss.

The CEO argued that it is unfair to charge a person twice over the same offence.

“If the arrest is permitted to happen, then my right to bail will be infringed as I am currently out on bail having been charged with similar offences. The police are being used to harass and intimidate me and or oppress me by virtue of the office I hold,” claimed Kimote.

The NCPB boss pleaded with the court to issue him with anticipatory bail, saying that two nights at the police station were unpleasant.

Kimote promised that he would comply with the police in case they summoned him.

"I will at all times be willing and be ready to co-operate with investigative agencies… I will abide by the terms set by this honourable court,” he argued.

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