Court bars decision to shut vocal lobby groups

Maina Kiai

The High Court has stopped the decision to close down Africa Centre for Open Governance (Africog).

Further, the court stopped the freezing of Africog’s bank accounts pending hearing and determination of the case.

Similarly, Justice Chacha Mwita gave the NGO orders to pursue their case.

In the case, Africog together with its directors moved to court seeking to stop the government from interfering with its operations.

They argued that the NGO Coordination Board boss, Mahamed Fazul, on his own accord and on behalf of Cabinet Secretary for Interior and the NGO Board have no role whatsoever to interfere with their operations.

The lobby group say that Fazul’s decisions cannot be reasonably justified in a democratic society and underscored by sovereignty of the people, constitution delegation and delimitation of powers, good governance and the rule of law.

“Fazul decision have been made in excess or without jurisdiction and are bad in law,” claims Africog.

They want the court to quash Fazul’s decision to close down its operations.

Further they want the court to stop their arrest and commencement of criminal prosecution.

Africog say that it is registered under the Companies Act and as for the last 10 years diligently and religiously complied with all statutory and regulatory obligations there on without any complain by the statutory regulator or any other person.

The decision by Fazul have maliciously and mischievously placed Africog operations.

“The respondents have an obligation to respect, uphold and defend the constitution of Kenya and all the related laws,” argues the petitioners.

Respondents in the case include CS Interior, AG, Non-Governmental Organizations Coordination Board, NGO Executive Director, Director of Criminal Investigations, CBK Governor and the DPP.

The Law Society of Kenya has been named as an interested party in the matter.

The petitioners include African Center for Open Governance (AfriCOG) and its directors John Githongo, Maina Kiai, Dr. Fumni Olonisakin, Stella Chege, Donald Deya, Charles Wanguhu and Gladwell Otieno.

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Story By Dzuya Walter
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