Chief Magistrate Douglas Ogoti has opted out in the graft case involving Samburu Governor Moses Lenolkulal and 13 others after the suspects complained of bias.
Chief Magistrate in graft case against Samburu Governor quits
"Charged with conspiracy to commit an offence of corruption and abuse of office"
The suspects in the graft case through their lawyer Paul Nyamondi, claimed that they had been prejudged even before the case was heard. They argued that the judge showered bias towards them, when they appeared in court to take plea.
In his ruling, Ogoti explained that he will not cling on the case although his conscience was clear.
On Tuesday Ogoti had ruled that Lenolkulal should pay a cash bail of Sh100 million, despite denying Sh84 million corruption charges.
He was later released on Thursday, after high court Judge Mumbi Ngugi reduced the Sh100 million bail to Sh10 million.
Justice Ngugi noted that the terms set by Justice Douglas Ogoti were excessive.
The judge further reduced the cash bond from Sh150 million to Sh30 million with a surety of a similar amount.
Lenolkulal will not tamper with witnesses
"It has not been demonstrated that he is a flight risk, and I note that the Prosecution did not oppose his application for bail.The applicant has also been barred from accessing County offices, so the apprehension that he may interfere with witnesses is not a consideration," Justice Ngugi noted.
The governor is charged with conspiracy to commit an offence of corruption, abuse of office, conflict of interest and unlawful acquisition of public property contrary to the law, all of which he has denied.
On Friday, the suspects will appear before Senior Principal Magistrate Lawrence Mugambi for plea taking.
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