, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jun 12 – Suspects indicted in the Sh468 million fraud at the National Youth Service will remain in custody until Tuesday next week whether their bail applications will be granted.
The directions were issued Tuesday afternoon by Justice Edwing Ong’udi who heard applications by lawyers representing 46 suspects charged with corruption-related offences including Public Service and Youth Affairs Principal Secretary Lillian Omollo who is accused of authorizing irregular payments to ten companies.
The public prosecutor had on May 28 identified 54 suspects among them forty civil servants for prosecution but eight are yet to be formally charged in court.
The 46 suspects whose bail application were submitted before the High Court on Tuesday objected their continued detention by the State pending further investigations as trials got underway.
In his ruling Chief Magistrate Douglas Ogoti denied the suspects bail when they appeared before his court on June 5 citing the gross economic crimes they face.
He said the 46 could interfere with ongoing investigations if freed at the time.
The ruling by Justice Ongundi came hot on the heels of another ruling on Monday in which a magistrate court ordered some 100 accounts in twenty commercial banks frozen after the Assets Recovery Agency (ARA) moved to court petitioning for the same.
ARA had told the court the said accounts which are connected to the 54 NYS suspects among them 14 company directors were being probed for money laundering.
According to the Director of Public Prosecutions, Noordin Haji, investigators found the Sh468 million payments to ten business entities were approved without any tender having been awarded nor product or service supplied.
PS Omollo, who has since been admitted in the hospital, and NYS Director-General Richard Ndubai were charged on May 29 with conspiracy to commit corruption and abusing powers and privileges conferred on them by virtue of the offices they held when the irregular payments were approved.
Similar charges were preferred against former Acting NYS Director-General Sammy Michuki as well as Senior Deputy Director Nicholas Ahere and Acting Director of Finance Wellington Lubira.
Company directors and proprietors on trial include Anne Ngirita, Phyllis Njeri, Catherine Mwai, Antony Wamiti, James Thuita, Yvonne Ngugi, Jeremiah Ngirita, Lucy Ngirita, Andrine Nyambura, Catherine Kamuyu, Serah Muguru, Samwel Kanai, and James Katululu.
They are linked to Annwaw Investment, Njewanga Investments, Arkroad Holdings Limited, Kunjiwa Enterprises, Ameri Trade Limited, Ngwiwaco Enterprises, Jerrycathy Enterprises, Firstling Supplies Limited, Kalabash Food Supplies Limited, and Ersatz Enterprises, entities which were awarded colossal sums of money for goods and services not supplied.