State appeals against conviction of security bosses
The government has stepped up its bid to fight against the conviction and fining of its three top officers regarding fiery lawyer Miguna Miguna’s detention and deportation.
In documents sworn by Solicitor-General Kennedy Ogeto, the government has protested against orders issued when Dr Miguna returned into the country but was detained at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA).
On March 27, Justice Roselyn Aburili ordered that Dr Miguna be released from detention at JKIA and be presented in court the following day.
When the matter came before Justice George Odunga, he summoned Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i, Immigration Principal Secretary Gordon Kihalang’wa and Inspector General of Police Joseph Boinnet to appear before him in the afternoon.
However, the trio failed to appear in court as ordered, which consequently led to their conviction before being fined Sh200,000 each.
“The declaration that the appellants are in violation of the Constitution renders them unfit to hold public office and therefore, unless stay is granted, they are likely to lose their respective positions in the public service,” Mr Ogeto said.
In the documents, Mr Ogeto has faulted Justice Odunga for punishing the trio without an application of contempt filed before him as well as evidence presented.
He argued that the three were not given a fair hearing.
He has further accused Justice Odunga of issuing orders that were never requested for by lawyers representing the activist.
He alleged that the order by Justice Aburili was temporary and could not lead to a final guilty determination and conviction of the officers by Justice Odunga.
“I am a law abiding Kenyan and I am shocked that a court of law would proceed without regard to my rights and the procedure under the Contempt of Court Act,” Dr Matiang’i said in a sworn affidavit.
He added: “The declaration exposes me to unwarranted stigma and public ridicule thus affecting my ability to discharge my duties effectively; should stay not be granted, the prejudice and harm occasioned in the meantime would be irreparable.”
Separately, at the High Court, the three also want orders issued by Justice Aburili to be set aside.
In the documents filed on March 28, the legal investigations officer at Immigration Department, Mr Jimmy Nyikuli, claimed that Dr Miguna declined to wilfully produce his travel documents at the diplomatic counter for clearance but instead became unruly.
He accused Dr Miguna of attempting to assault the JKIA OCS who attempted to calm him down before tearing statutory forms he was requested to fill in.
Early this week, the three top government officers appeared before a parliamentary committee for interrogation regarding denial of entry, mistreatment and deportation of Dr Miguna.