Governor Evans Kidero on the spot in Sh200m bribery saga

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Governor Evans Kidero on the spot in Sh200m bribery saga
Evans Kidero on the spot in Sh200m bribery sagaNairobi Governor Evans Kidero could find himself in a tight corner after the Judicial Service Commission recommended that a tribunal be formed to investigate a judge said to have a received a bribe from the county boss.

Justice Phillip Tunoi will face the tribunal to be formed by President Uhuru Kenyatta to look into claims that the Supreme Court judge pocketed Sh202 million to influence an election petition filed against Dr Kidero.

Both Dr Kidero and the judge maintained innocence, before and after the JSC announced the decision.

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The commission, basing its decision on a report by a special committee formed on January 27, said there was “inappropriate interaction between the Justice Philip Tunoi and the agents of the litigant in a matter pending before the Supreme Court”.

The JSC was not categorical that it had found information that a bribe was paid, but said the bribery claim was “an issue that requires further investigation”.

Justice Tunoi announced last evening he was ready to face the tribunal and clear his name.

POLITICAL, LEGAL CONSEQUENCES

But there are political and legal consequences for the governor too.

The Directorate of Criminal Investigations or the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission can pick up the matter and recommend prosecution should they find evidence of the same inappropriate interaction with a judge.

Politically, Dr Kidero will have to get the backing of members of the county assembly.

Should they be irked by revelations by the JSC, the assembly could present and pass an impeachment Motion.

But the governor may also be pestered by the man who lost a petition to him in August 2014.

Soon after the bribery claims were made two weeks ago, Mr Ferdinand Waititu, now Kabete MP, who lost when the Supreme Court upheld Dr Kidero’s election, demanded that verdict be reviewed.

The JSC has so far stayed clear of that demand.

Dr Kidero, who was meeting members of his Cabinet and the Nairobi County Assembly on Friday exuded confidence before the JSC’s announcement, saying his record was clean and did not wish to be distracted by the “confusion in the Judiciary”.

“As you can see, I am not nervous at all and I don’t really want to get involved in this saga,” he told reporters in Naivasha.

“I believe the sense of fairness shall prevail. I will talk of what I know and what I don’t know.”

He said he had faith in the constitutional clauses and promised to present himself before the investigation committee if required to do so and   shed more light on the bribery allegations.

The governor distanced himself from what he termed “judicial wars”.

nation.co.ke

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