Salasya appears in one case, misses another saying he's on paternity leave

Mumias East MP Peter Salasya in Mumias Law Courts where he was released on Sh50,000 bond after he was accused of assaulting Malaha-Isongo MCA Peter Walunya. [File, Standard]

Mumias East MP Peter Salasya has failed to appear in a civil case later saying he was on paternity leave even as he took to the dock in yet another case, a criminal one where he succeeded to temporarily hold the hearing.

 The first-time MP is facing the criminal case at the Mumias law courts where he denied charges of assaulting Malaha-Isango Ward MCA Peter Walunya at a funeral and a civil one in Kakamega, where he is defending himself against verbally assaulting a Kakamega-based lawyer Edwin Wafula.

 In the criminal case at Mumias, Salasya took to the dock where he successfully applied for the hearing to be pushed forward hoping that his lawyer would have recovered.

 Mumias Senior Resident Magistrate Marcella Amondi allowed the prayer by the MP who is out on a Sh50,000 cash bail saying the case should be mentioned in a fortnight to allocate it a fresh hearing date.

 At least 17 lawyers are also in the case against the MP whose charge sheet states he slapped the MCA at the solemn function occasioning him minor bodily harm around the face.

 It was however not the case in Kakamega where Principal Magistrate James Masiga allowed the civil case to go on in the absence of the MP who, by the time of calling out the file had not given a reason why he failed to appear.

 The court sought to inquire whether his lawyer was in court or even on the online platform but there was no response prompting it to go on with the hearing in line with delivering speedy justice.

 In the case, Lawyer Edwin Wafula who sued the MP for defamation late last year laid bare the circumstances under which the MP had soiled his reputation.

 He said he filed the case on November 3 last year seeking general and punitive damages over ‘degrading’ words aimed at injuring his reputation after he represented a client in a case at the Kakamega Small Claims Court against Salasya and won.  

 He said ever since, the MP had become wild against him and took to abusing him when all he had done was represent a client who walked into his office.

 “On November 2, 2023, at around 6 pm, I went to an establishment within Kakamega Town, Vovo, in the company of friends to have coffee when Salasya confronted me and verbally started hurling insults in Swahili,” he said.  

 The lawyer, who also wants Salasya to pay for the cost of the case, added that the MP continued with the insults prompting the restaurant’s management to politely order him out for breaching the prevailing peace.   

 Wafula said around 7:30 pm on the same day (November 2, 2023) he, alongside his friends, decided to relocate to another restaurant, Vault, within Kakamega Town but the MP again, cut in on him with another round of defamatory Swahili insults. 

 The lawyer said he was so disturbed by the implications of the words which tainted his reputation and hold potential to bring down his career spanning over 15 years.

 In the case heard Tuesday morning, the magistrate allowed lawyer Derek Mango to file final written submissions within seven days in readiness for judgment as the case went unopposed.

 In a twist of events, at about 1:00pm on the same day, Mango received an email from Salasya’s lawyer who said he knew that case was on but was sorry, his client was on leave.

 “Good afternoon counsel (Mango). Whereas I am aware that this matter has a hearing date, the undersigned (Salasya)  is on paternity leave and will not be able to proceed. I shall seek an adjournment on the above ground,” said the lawyer.

 In response, Mango said: “Good afternoon, and thank you for your email. Congratulations are in order. It may have been prudent on your part to send the mail timeously. The suit proceeded for hearing this morning.”

 The case will be mentioned on March 19 to confirm the status of filing the final submission ahead of the judgment.