Kethi objects to theft charges as ‘illegal’

September 3, 2013 9:40 am
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Kethi argued that she needed time to show the court that the charge preferred against her is unconstitutional and that she could not take a plea on an illegality/MIKE KARIUKI
Kethi argued that she needed time to show the court that the charge preferred against her is unconstitutional and that she could not take a plea on an illegality/MIKE KARIUKI
NAIROBI, Kenya, Sept 3 – Embattled Nairobi lawyer Kethi Kilonzo has refused to take her plea in the case over an alleged stolen voter’s slip, arguing the charges are illegal.

Through lawyer Fred Ojiambo, Kethi argued that she needed time to show the court that the charges preferred against her are unconstitutional and that she could not take a plea on an illegality.

Ojiambo argued that Kethi would suffer prejudice if she took the plea with the charges as framed.

“What’s the rush about taking a plea? The accused is here; the accused has always been there so why don’t you want to hear what we have to say then rule whichever way?” asked Ojiambo.

But Senior Assistant Director of Public Prosecutions Jacob Ondari maintained that Kethi should first take the plea and then make her claims.

Kethi is to be charged alongside an Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) official Godfrey Lemiso for fraudulently obtaining a voter’s acknowledgement slip.

Kethi reported to the Criminal Investigations Department on Monday where detectives took a statement and her fingerprints before freeing her on bond.

Kethi is accused of theft, handling stolen property and presenting false documents to the IEBC, while Lemiso is indicted for neglecting his duties and also theft.

She moved to court in August to get an assurance that she would not be arrested before taking her plea.

Details surrounding the validity of her registration status came up in July when it emerged that the voter’s slip she had had been removed from the same booklet only used to register former President Mwai Kibaki.

Acting Chief Magistrate Doreen Mulekyo announced that she would make a ruling on the matter at 2:15pm on Tuesday.
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