Former Nairobi Governor Evans Kidero and former acting head of Treasury Maurice Ochieng Okere spent another night in police custody.
Chief magistrate Douglas Ogoti directed the two to be held at the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) cells until this morning, pending the processing of their bail terms. The court said if the two fail to complete the process by 10am, they should be taken to Industrial Area remand.
After denying corruption and abuse of office charges, the court ordered Dr Kidero and Mr Okere to deposit a cash bail of Sh2 million each in court to secure their release. They are further required to execute personal bonds of Sh5 million each and deposit a bond of Sh3 million each plus surety of the same amount.
The court further directed former Nairobi county secretary Lillian Ndegwa, former chief finance officer Jimmy Mutuku Kiamba, Mr Gregory Mwakanongo, a former chief executive officer in charge of finance and planning, former accounting head Stephen Ogago Osiro, Mr Luke Mugo, a former acting chief finance officer, to present themselves before the EACC headquarters at Integrity Centre before noon.
In case they do not show up as directed, Mr Ogoti said police should arrest them and present them in court.
Others required to present themselves to EACC are businessman John Githua and Ms Grace Njeri of Lodwar Wholesalers Ltd and Ngurumani Traders Ltd, respectively. The two companies allegedly received millions from City Hall for services not rendered.
The court heard that the two accused and seven others, who were not in court, conspired to commit fraud which led to the loss of Sh213,327,300 at the county government between January 16, 2014, and January 25, 2016. They allegedly conspired to commit corruption by authorising payment to various companies for services not rendered.
Dr Kidero allegedly received a total of Sh24 million from Lodwar wholesalers ltd on diverse dates. He allegedly received Sh14 million from Lodwar Wholesalers on August 24, 2014 and another Sh10 million from the same company on September 11, 2014. The prosecution claimed that the money was acquired through corrupt dealings.
Mr Okere denied several charges of authorising several payments for services not rendered. It is alleged that he authorised several payments to Ngurumani Traders and Lodwar Wholesalers, yet there was no service rendered.
The chief magistrate further directed that no fresh plea will be registered at the anti-corruption court registry after 8:30am. This was after Dr Kidero's lawyer Tom Ojienda protested saying they had been kept waiting in court since 9am.
Prof Ojienda said it had become a habit for prosecution to delay arraigning suspects in court, deliberately to keep them in custody longer.
Mr Ogoti agreed saying he had noted the habit and even though it might be within the 24 hours required by the law, it left the court with little time to decide on bond application. He said an order will be extracted and pasted at the registry and served to the DPP's office.
After denying the charges, the prosecution through assistant DPP Joseph Gitonga opposed their release on bond arguing that the accused persons were still influential and might interfere with witnesses.
He further said the charges were serious and that the charges were preferred after comprehensive and thorough investigations.
“The decision to charge them was not out of excitement but after gathering conclusive evidence,” Mr Gitonga said.
Prof Ojienda dismissed the claims stating that the offences were allegedly committed more than three years ago and the two were no longer working at City Hall. He said the charges preferred against them were not serious at all but the prosecution had cleverly drafted them to appear serious.
According to Prof Ojienda the charges should be pointed at individuals concerned and not to persons who had nothing to do with the acts or omissions. He further said the two accused persons were neither a flight risk nor posed any danger to public security.
Mr Ogoti ruled that after balancing arguments from both sides, it was his decision to release them on bond. He, however, warned them against contacting any of the witnesses failure to which their bail terms would be cancelled. He also directed them to deposit their passports in court and they are free to apply for them when they need the documents.
The pre-trial of the case will be held on September 7.