, NAIROBI, Kenya, Apr 12 – The tribunal formed to probe allegations that suspended Supreme Court Judge Philip Tunoi took over Sh200 million in bribe money will resume its sittings on Tuesday, April 26.
The decision was reached at a status conference held on Tuesday afternoon after the lead assisting counsel Paul Nyamodi and Tunoi through his lawyer Fred Ngatia disagreed on the order of witnesses to be heard.
Nyamodi’s proposal was that the tribunal resume its sittings from May 3 onwards in order to give his team time to verify the details of Geoffrey Kiplagat’s testimony but Tunoi felt there was nothing stopping the tribunal from sitting into the afternoon and hearing another witness.
“I think the judge is tongue-tied. It can’t really be us pushing so hard for a hearing which we are not having,” Ngatia submitted to the tribunal.
Nyamodi’s contention was that introducing another witness before Kiplagat was re-examined and finished with, would render their records “untidy” and less “cogent.”
“There is a lot of material that has arisen from cross-examination that the office of counsel assisting wishes to verify with the various witnesses,” he submitted to the Sharad Rao-chaired tribunal.
Kiplagat who claims to have witnessed Tunoi receive the Sh200 million bribe from Nairobi Governor Evans Kidero – in exchange for a favourable verdict in an election petition that pitted him against now Kabete MP Ferdinand Waititu – was cross-examined by Ngatia on Tuesday.
He gave his evidence-in-chief behind closed doors on April 5 before the tribunal’s sittings were adjourned for the first time on April 7 to allow the accused, Tunoi, deal with his challenge to retirement at 70 in the Court of Appeal.
As the complainant, Kiplagat was the first to testify before the tribunal also composed of Retired Justice Jonathan Havelock, Justice Roselyne Korir, Judith Guserwa, James Gacoka, Abdirashid Hussein and George Wakukha.