Elachi says she didn't hire law firm that obtained consent order

Wednesday March 18 2020
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Nairobi County Assembly Speaker Beatrice Elachi who has termed a disputed consent order on her return to office as a collusion of advocates and was aimed at removing her from office illegally while masquerading as her legal representatives. PHOTO | FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP

By MAUREEN KAKAH

Nairobi County Assembly Speaker Beatrice Elachi has moved to court seeking her full and swift return to office.

Ms Elachi, whose recent return was characterised by chaos, drama and fist fights in the assembly she is expected to preside over, protested against a court order obtained through a consent signed last week.

She argued that she had received a consent order issued on October 25 in which there was a purported agreement entered between parties in a suit seeking to have her removed from office.

DISMISSES LAW FIRM

She claimed that she was represented by Musyoki Mogaka & Company advocates without her knowledge in the case in which the disputed order was obtained.

“I have never instructed or dealt with the said law firm as purported at all in respect of this specific matter. By reason of this, the consent order issued is null and void,” said Ms Elachi.

The disputed order was issued in a case in which Ms Joy Furaha Mranja, a Nairobi voter, as well a county employee, sued Ms Elachi, the Nairobi County Assembly, its clerk and the acting Speaker.

KICK OUT ELACHI

Ms Mranja wants Ms Elachi kicked out of office permanently while accusing her of absconding duty, lack of accountability in the use of public funds and failure to protect public property among other reasons.

On October 5, High Court judge James Makau ordered the petitioner to give copies of the case documents to the sued parties as required by law before any further directions could be issued.

According to the judge, he was not satisfied by the affidavit sworn in court showing that the sued parties had been given copies of the filed documents.

However on October 25, it is alleged that a consent order was issued in court with the said law firm which claimed to represent Ms Elachi with her knowledge.

COLLUSION

Ms Elachi has termed the disputed consent order as a collusion of advocates and was aimed at removing her from office illegally while masquerading as her legal representatives.

She has denied ever authorising the said law firm to represent her, conducting any meetings with its lawyers with regard to representing her in that case or having an advocate-client relationship with them.

Through lawyer Harrison Kinyanjui, she told the court that she learnt of the disputed consent order as well as the case on Tuesday, October 29.

As a result, she is asking the court to lift the order which had barred her from being in office as the Speaker of the Nairobi County Assembly.

She argued that she has no issues with anyone challenging her suitability in office but was opposed to the fact that the court was told that she was aware of the case and a consent entered into on her behalf without her knowledge.

CHAOS

Since her return to office earlier this month, rival factions have been engaged in fights over a her planned impeachment and the removal of Majority Leader Abdi Guyo as well as the composition of the assembly’s new board and the sending of Clerk Jacob Ngwele on a one-month compulsory leave.

On one hand, a group of MCAs led by Mr Guyo) Matopeni Spring Valley) have vowed not to recognise Ms Elachi as the Speaker and want her kicked out at all costs.

On the other hand, another faction comprising both Jubilee and ODM party members supports her but does not recognise Mr Guyo as the majority leader.

It is Mr Guyo’s faction that moved to court and allegedly obtained an order to kick her out of office in a pending court case.

Ms Elachi now wants the High Court to set aside the disputed consent order, to nullify the purported representation by the said law firm and the proceedings of the case to be struck out.