NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 25 – Lawyer Paul Muite has denied allegations that he participated in coaching Willy Mutunga before he was interviewed for the position of Chief Justice.
In a letter written to the National Assembly, the Senior Counsel denied claims made by debt collector and businessman Bryan Yongo made when he appeared before the House committee on Justice and Legal Affairs.
“I categorically deny taking any part in coaching Dr Willy Mutunga anywhere, at any time for his interviews for the position of the Chief Justice of the Republic of Kenya as alleged,” he said.
Muite said the claim was aimed at tarnishing the name of the CJ who has been his friend since the struggle for multiparty politics and constitutional reforms in the 1990s.
The former Kabete MP also recalled Mutunga served as his deputy when he chaired the Law Society of Kenya in the 1990s.
He described Mutunga as a person of “strong will, independent mind and integrity.”
“If the only way for Dr Mutunga to get a job is through coaching in order for him to gain an advantage over other applicants, the Dr Mutunga I know will simply tell one to keep their job.”
Appearing before the Parliamentary Committee on Justice and Legal Affairs, Yongo who claims to have been a long-time business associate of JSC member Ahmednasir Abdullahi, sensationally claimed Muite and Abdullahi coached Mutunga prior to his appearance at his interview with the Judicial Service Commission in 2011, with a view to influencing his appointment.
“Ahmednasir Abdullahi confided to me that whilst the interviews for the Chief Justice were underway, he and Senior Counsel Muite took the current Chief Justice, Honourable Willy Mutunga to his (Abdullahi’s) residence in Karen for coaching,” said the managing director of Neptune Credit Management Ltd.
“I have text messages to this effect,” Yongo told the committee.
He added that Abdullahi wields undue immense control over the JSC and the entire Judiciary.
“The Chief Justice is a captive of Ahmednasir. He was coached and supplanted by him. He once told me that he will ensure Mutunga gets the CJ’s job.”
Yongo claimed that during the alleged meeting where Abdullahi and Muite coached Mutunga for the interviews, the National Intelligence Service (NIS) had trailed Abdullahi when he was in the company of the CJ-to-be.
“Ahmednasir told me that NIS officers trailed them up to his residence in Karen, but the officers could not go beyond the gate, nor could they take photographs of the two,” he said in a sworn affidavit, in which he claims that he and Ahmednasir had a long-time friendship.