NAIROBI, Kenya, Aug 6 – Attorney General Githu Muigai has urged the High Court to dismiss a petition by veteran politician Kenneth Matiba who had sued the government for Sh9.1 million as damages for illegal detention.
Muigai claimed that Matiba’s petition filed in February is fatally defective and does not meet the requirements of a constitutional petition.
According to the AG, Matiba failed to disclose crucial particulars of the allegations of mistreatment and harassment.
“The petitioner should be stopped from alleging unlawful arrest and detention while he repeatedly admits that the said actions were done in accordance with the law and in part section 83 of the repealed Constitution and the preservation of public security Act,” he said.
Litigating counsel Charles Kamunya stated that the AG will be heavily prejudiced if the petition is allowed to proceed because he would be required to call witnesses who have either retired, left service, passed on or otherwise unavailable.
Justice Isaac Lenaola was told “the petition fails to cite with precision provisions of the Constitution allegedly contravened, provide particulars of the complaints the manner of infringement and the jurisdictional basis of the action before the court.”
Matiba has since informed the High Court that he intends to call three witnesses to give oral evidence in the case.
He has expressed his intention to call his physician Dan Gikonyo and financial analyst Lawrence Riungu and Charles Nyanjui.
In his supplementary affidavit, Matiba insisted that his call for multi-party democracy was lawful and done in good faith.
Matiba contended that the illegal detention by the Moi regime had a devastating effect on his health and business.
The retired politician explained that President Uhuru Kenyatta and his deputy William Ruto paid him separate visits in August and September last year respectively and paid glowing tribute to him for his role in the democratisation of the country.
Matiba was arrested on July 4, 1990 and held at various prison facilities before being finally taken to Langata police station where he stayed until his release.
The former Kiharu Member of Parliament wants the High Court to declare that he is entitled to compensation by way of damages for violation of his fundamental rights.
He is seeking Sh9,153,103 as special damages for medical expenses, general, exemplary and aggravated damages.
The former powerful politician indicated that he is entitled to the compensation because during the illegal detention he suffered stroke.