, NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 31 – The trial of thirty-seven suspects in the Sh468 million National Youth Service (NYS) scandal will continue after the defense was denied more time to prepare for the trial.
Magistrate Douglas Ogoti pointed out that there was not enough reason presented to warrant an adjournment of the proceedings and directed that submissions be made.
“There are thirty-seven accused persons in this trial. It’s a peculiar trial with so many accused persons. This court will guard against applications that will trample on the rights of other accused persons,” he said.
“Today’s date was agreed by consent. The application does not meet the threshold of an adjournment and this case will proceed,” he stated.
The application was brought forward by lawyer Wandugi Kirathe who is representing two of the suspects.
In his argument, he stated that the defence team had little time to go through evidence statements submitted by the prosecution on Monday.
Ogoti, however, dismissed the application on various grounds.
Eight of the suspects among those charged with the theft have agreed to be witnesses.
They include Sammy Michuki who served as Deputy Director General and seven others whose charges will be withdrawn.
They were among 66 suspects-including former Principal Secretary Lilian Omolo-who were charged with the theft of Sh468 million from the youth department.
The Director of Public Prosecutions has indicated that they are ready to prove their case against the suspects, among them directors of companies that benefited from the loot.