NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 18 – Television journalist Jacque Maribe has distanced herself from Joseph Irungu alias Jowie, her co-accused in the murder trial of businesswoman Monica Kimani.
In a 35-point affidavit sworn a day before her return to court on Wednesday for a mention on bail application hearing, Maribe deponed that she was just Irungu’s lover at the time the crime is said to have been committed wondering why she had been charged with Monica’s murder seemingly because she was in a romantic relationship with him.
According to Maribe, the only reason she was standing trial for the murder of Monica was because “ I was in a love relationship with a person the prosecution have an interest in,” allowed Irungu to come live in her house, and gave him access to her car.
She stated that the prosecution had neither witness accounts nor forensic material associating her either directly or indirectly with the murder of Monica, a person she insisted she had no knowledge of.
“I had no motive to kill the deceased. I didn’t participate directly or indirectly in it. No motive is alleged with regard to me,” she averred.
“Further, the lack of ingredient of motive goes in the strength of the alleged case against us/me,” she further wrote under oath.
In her affidavit, Maribe pleaded for her admission to bail on reasonable grounds as provided for in Article 49 (h) praying that the cash bail amount be set at an amount not exceeding Sh350,000 with a similar surety.
The Citizen Television news anchor denied knowledge of Irungu’s whereabouts on the night of September 19 when he is said to have allegedly murdered Monica at her Lamuria Gardens Apartment in Kilimani.
The Friday Night host also denied knowledge of burning clothes Irungu is suspected to have worn on the fateful night, saying she was not aware of the incident neither did she approve the burning.
Similarly, Maribe denied knowledge of monies Monica who had just returned from Juba in South Sudan could have been carrying when she was killed at her apartment.
She termed her linking to Monica’s murder “wholly weak circumstantial association.”
The affidavit also faulted efforts by the prosecution to deny her bail on grounds that she was in telephone communication with Irungu on the date the murder occurred terming the campaign by the public prosecutor as unjust.
“Without a doubt the 1st accused (Irungu) was my fiancé. I the circumstances, I definitely communicated with him. It is most unfair to use the communication between me and the 1st accused in the given circumstances of our then existing relationship as a reason to withhold bail,” she argued.
Maribe refuted a view by the prosecution that her phone had been shut when it became apparent that she was being sought to record a statement following the arrest of her now ex-fiancé on September 24.
According to Maribe, her phone had not been switched off at any given time since she was accessed by her lawyers and friends through it.
She singled out her voluntary appearance at the Directorate of Criminal Investigations on September 27 as a clear demonstration that she was willing to cooperate with investigators
Maribe who has been in custody since September 29 when she was arrested during a routine interrogation denied intent to intimidate key witnesses given her influence as a media personality.
She promised to deposit her passport in court as guarantee of her willingness to remain within the jurisdiction of the trial court.
Maribe is set to appear before Justice James Wakiaga on Wednesday next week when she will plead her case for release on bail.
During mention of the case on Wednesday, Justice Wakiaga warned the press to desist from reporting on the case in a manner that could put him under undue pressure while considering the merits of the evidence.
Maribe was charged on Monday alongside Irungu with the murder of Monica before Lady Justice Jessie Lessit.
Justice Lessit had in the preceding week ordered a mental examination on Maribe an outcome of which was released on Friday clearing the way for plea-taking on Monday.
Justice Lessit’s courtroom was the second Maribe and her ex-fiancé were finding themselves in having been arraigned before Kiambu Principle Magistrate Justus Kituku on October 1 during which appearance the prosecution was granted 11 days to conclude investigations before charging the duo.
Irungu entered the police dragnet after he was found to be having a gunshot wound, a wound believed to have been inflicted on a date corresponding to Monica’s murder.
Police later traced the bullet matching Irungu’s wound in Maribe’s house at the Royal Park Estate in Lang’ata.
A further probed revealed the gun in question belonged to Maribe’s neighbour – Brian Kassaine.
Kassaine was granted bail last week after spending 10 days in police custody with instructions that he reports to the Directorate of Criminal Investigations every Thursday for two months.