Lawyer Tom Ojienda arrested over Mumias saga


File image of Tom Ojienda. PHOTO| COURTESY
File image of Tom Ojienda. PHOTO| COURTESY

A top lawyer Tom Ojienda was on Friday afternoon arrested and grilled over the Mumias Sugar Company saga.

Prof. Ojienda is a member of the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) and represents the company’s former MD Evans Kidero,.

Ojienda was rushed to the Directorate of Criminal Investigation (DCI) headquarters for questioning.

Law Society of Kenya vice president Harriette Chiggai confirmed the arrest adding that a team of lawyers led by senior counsel John
Khaminwa are handling the matter.

She condemned the move terming it as malicious as no court will be operating this weekend.

She further urged the Director of Public Prosecution to formulate a proper way of handling graft cases without violating people’s rights.

Lawyer Nelson Havi echoed similar sentiments saying the arrest is ‘justice on trial.’

“It is easy to see through the ploy by the DCI and the DPP in arresting Professor Tom Ojienda on a Friday afternoon: hold him over the weekend; procure warrants to search his homes and offices in his absence; and violate his constitutional rights in the process,” he said.

In November this year, there were reports Ojienda was being sought over loss of funds at the Mumias Sugar Company.

The Business Daily newspaper reported that the lawyer was in trouble over allegedly forging entries in his tax register and creating fake figures for payments in his legal fees.

Prof. Ojienda then got a court order preventing DCI officers from arresting him.

Additional reporting by Chemutai Goin

Editor’s Note: An earlier version of this story said lawyer Paul Wanyama who works with Prof. Ojienda was also arrested. Wanyama has since clarified that he voluntarily recorded a statement at the DCI headquarters. The DPP has also clarified that Court of Appeal Judge James Otieno Odek is not wanted by police as earlier reported. The Judge also recorded a statement voluntarily and is not under any investigations. He is however a State witness against Prof. Ojienda in the Mumias Sugar Company case.

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