Magistrate Ogoti withdraws from Governor Lenolkulal corruption case

Magistrate Ogoti withdraws from Governor Lenolkulal corruption case

Anti-Corruption Court Chief Magistrate Douglas Ogoti has withdrawn from the the case against Samburu Governor Moses Lenolkulal and deferred it to Magistrate Lawrence Mugambi.

This came after the embattled governor’s lawyer, Paul Nyamodi, urged the Magistrate to recuse himself from the case citing his views during an interview published Wednesday on a local daily.

However, while deferring the case, Ogoti stated that he had “no other interest other than to administer justice,” adding that “let the parties not fear that I will be biased in any way.”

“I’m just the head of the anti-corruption case and there are other people who can handle the matter. I have deferred the case to magistrate Lawrence Mugambi. The suspects should be remanded in custody until that time,” said Ogoti.

Lawyer Nyamodi had submitted that Magistrate Ogoti recuses himself from the case saying he was “not fit to hear this matter”, further citing his personal views about corruption in the said interview.

“In this article are strong views by a magistrate who is charged with the responsibility of hearing this case. Reading the article there can be no clearer demonstration of a court that has already pre-judged and made up its mind,” said Nyamodi.

“Where will the accused person run if the person pointing a finger at them is the court? Your honor you are in breach of the judicial code of conduct.”

Magistrate Ogoti came under heavy criticism on Tuesday when he slapped Governor Lenolkulal with a cash bail of Ksh.100 million or Ksh.150 million bond after denying charges of corruption and abuse of office.

The Governor was, however, released after paying a cash bail of  Ksh.10 million. This was after he successfully filed for a review of the bail amount from the previously set amount of Ksh.100 million to Ksh.10 million.