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Kenya

Magistrate pulls out of Linturi-Kitany divorce case

NAIROBI, Kenya Feb 24 – A Chief magistrate has disqualified herself from hearing a divorce case involving Meru Senator Franklin Linturi and his estranged wife Marriane Kitany.

Trial magistrate Liz Gicheha said she could not handle the much publicised divorce case as she had handled a criminal case against one of the parties in Meru.

Senior Principal Magistrate D.W. Mburu who had been allocated the file after Magistrate Peter Gesora was transferred said he cannot handle the matter because of personal reasons. He referred the matter back to the Chief Magistrate.

 Last week, Gicheha had directed the parties to appear before Mburu for direction.

Lawyer Muthomi Thiankolu for Linturi told the court that before Gesora was transferred, they had scheduled the hearing of the case for February 13, 24, 25.

He pleaded with the court to expedite the case, saying the continued pendency was causing his client harm because of the interim orders that had been issued to Kitany.

He requested the court to direct both parties to stick to the time frames earlier issued so that the case can be expedited.

Thiankolu said the matter has been in court for over one year and it was yet to be concluded even though the High Court ordered the case to be expedited and no other case can proceed unless the divorce case is concluded.

Kitany’s lawyer Dastan Omari on his part insisted that they were seeking for the court’s directions before they raise any matter.

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Gicheha referred them to Senior Principal Magistrate Grace Mmasi.

Mmasi, on her part, said she needs time to peruse the file before issuing further directions on Monday next week on whether she will proceed with the case.

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