The High Court in Eldoret has dismissed a petition filed by Turkana Governor Jeremiah Lomurakai requesting anticipatory bail after concerns that he will be arrested for allegedly forging his university academic qualifications.
On January 27, 2023, Lomurakai filed an urgent petition before Eldoret High Court Judge R. Nyakundi, requesting that the court prevent the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) and the Office of the Directorate of Public Prosecutions (ODPP) from arresting and charging him.
“The Petitioner deposed that he knows from watching the television and reading print media that the CEO for EACC gave an address on 22nd September, 2022 to the newly elected members of the National Assembly indicating that the governor was to be arrested,” the court papers seen by Citizen Digital read in part.
“The Applicant further deposed that he knows from the news on all the leading television channels in the country that the following day on 23rd September, 2022 the 1st Respondent (EACC) leaked the information about his impending arrest.”
“The Applicant contends that it is in the premise of the said orders that the IEBC cleared him to vie in the gubernatorial elections for Turkana County under the ODM party ticket,” the court documents read.
“The Applicant is surprised and apprehensive that the Respondents are acting upon an incomplete investigation to issue orders of his arrest without making any prior of formal communication to him.”
Judge R. Nyakundi noted in his ruling that Lomurakai had failed to show the court how the EACC and ODPP had threatened or are just about to threaten his constitutional rights.
“The Applicant has further alleged that he has been receiving constant calls and threats from police officers of the 1st Respondent. He, however, has not tendered any evidence to support the said allegations. I agree with respect that the power conferred upon the respondents has not been abused or used mala- fides,” said Nyakundi.
“The Petitioner has failed to demonstrate that the Respondents have breached his fundamental rights to freedoms or that there exists any threat of his rights to warrant the grant of anticipatory bail. The Petition has no merit and I accordingly dismiss it.”
Throughout the proceedings, EACC argued that Lomurakai fraudulently acquired a University Degree and a Diploma in Counselling from Kenya Methodist University.
By dismissing Lomurakai’s application, Justice Nyakundi effectively paved the way for the governor’s arrest.
ADDITIONAL INPUT : NEWS AGENCIES