DPP beseeches court to absolve 14 accused persons in the Lake Basin Mall graft case

by Mahakamani News

On Tuesday, October 28, 2020, at a proceeding before Chief Magistrate Douglas Ogoti, the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP) sought an adjournment in the Ksh 4.2 billion Lake Basin Mall graft case.

According to the DPP, the adjournment would buy him more time to make a formal application and prepare witness statements from 14 accused people. On behalf of the DPP, state Counsel James Kihara informed the court that the DPP is considering to absolve the 14 accused as he intends to use them as witnesses.

Furthermore, the DPP had already instructed him to drop charges against a Mr Boniface Orori Simba- an accused person in the case. Mr Kihara informed the court that Mr Orori had been made a state witness and was expected to give incriminating evidence against Mr Onyango Oloo, Mr Peter Aguko, Mr Innocent Obiri- the Bobasi Member of Parliament and others.

I have formal instructions from Haji to withdraw charges against the eighth accused person (Orori). This is after reviewing the evidence on record. The DPP has said he will be treated as a prosecution witness and before the l drop the charges l require him to record a witness statement with EACC,” said Mr Kihara.

The defence team did not oppose the application for an extension of 10 more days from the prosecution team.

We can accord the state the said days. We urge the court to give us a mention date within which time prosecution will indicate which parties will be affected or not in their intended withdrawal of charges,” said Counsel Katwa Kigen

The facts of the case are that Mr Onyango Oloo together with Edermann Property Limited conspired with Chinese contractors -Zeyun Yang and Zhang Jing- to defraud the public.

The directors of Edermann property limited are accused of bribing Mr Onyango Oloo, who was then the chairman of Lake Basin Development Authority (LBDA) with Ksh 17 million. The kickback included other benefits, including apartments and shops.

According to the charge sheet, on December 18 and 19, 2014 in Kisumu county, Mr Oloo and Mr Aguko acting in the capacity of directors of the LBDA jointly and improperly conferred a benefit of Ksh 1.3 billion to Edermann property by irregularly approving the variation of the contract for the LBDA lower Kanykwar phase. Reportedly, the directors varied the contract from Ksh 2.4 billion to Ksh 3.7 billion.

Mr Oloo and Mr Aguko have been charged alongside Nelson Ouma, Albert Ojango Omondi, Teresa Ochieng, Michael Obora, John Mango, and Sebastian Mulla.

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