Salasya fights to save car in dispute over Sh0.5m debt

Mumias East MP Peter Salasya making a call in front of his vehicle that has become a target of auctioneers. [Benjamin Sakwa, Standard]

A Kakamega court is set to rule on whether Mumias East MP Peter Salasya will settle a Sh500,000 debt owed to a businessman in installments or lose his car.

An imminent court ruling is poised to determine the fate of the legislator’s golden Land Cruiser on April 19.

Caroline Cheruiyot, the adjudicator at Kakamega Small Claims Court (SCC), who recently halted the auction of Salasya’s golden Landcruiser, on Thursday said she will rule on the mode of payment the MP will use to pay off the debt plus interest. 

“In the meantime, the stay orders restraining the auctioneers from attaching his vehicle shall continue to take effect as the court seeks to give the ruling on the mode of payment of the decretal amount,” said Cheruiyot. 

Salasya proposed to settle the outstanding debt to the Kakamega businessman Robert Lutta in installments of Sh50,000 which Lutta, through his lawyer, Edwin Wafula has disagreed with. 

Mr Lutta feels 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 demonstrates a lack of integrity on the part of the politician but also highlights a broader issue of abuse of power and privilege within the political sphere. 

He says that even as Salasya was given a stay of one month before he starts paying up, he had not made an effort to pay his client even a cent. 

“Upon being granted a (30 day) stay, Salasya posted videos on his social media pages flushing wads of paper money, menacingly calling out on my advocate Mr Edwin Wafula to ‘come and pick money from my office,” says Lutta in his affidavit. 

He pleaded the unjustified delay was geared at manipulating and forcing him into a disadvantaged position raising concerns about the moral compass of Salasya and his accountability as a person in positions of authority. 

“Salasya went ahead to abuse the entire court process and system including the trial magistrate on social media,” he pleads in his court papers.

“His actions as a Member of Parliament depict someone who thinks he is above the law and can blatantly toy and make a mockery of the court system as he wishes,” Lutta argues.

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

Salasya maintains that his proposal for the Sh 50,000 installment payments is a reasonable and pragmatic approach to resolving the debt.

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