Sonko’s legal team quits graft case claiming magistrate bias


Former Nairobi governor Mike Sonko arrives at a court in Milimani, Nairobi. PHOTO | DENNIS ONSONGO | NMG

The second lot of defence lawyers in the Sh10m corruption case against former Nairobi governor Mike Sonko has quit.

Led by Dr John Khaminwa, Wilfred Nyamu, Assa Nyakundi, Philip Kahigu, Evans Ondieki and Martin Kuruga, they walked out claiming bias by trial magistrate Mr Douglas Ogoti.

They claimed Mr Ogoti declined to allow them time to get evidence from the first lot to prepare for Mr Sonko’s defence.

Additionally, they wanted the case adjourned claiming Mr Sonko may have contracted Coronavirus.

In declining to adjourn the case for 60 days, Mr Ogoti said they (lawyers) had been supplied with electronic evidence by the Ethics and Ant-Corruption Commission and should therefore have down loaded.

“As a lawyer of long-standing, having practiced for over 50 years I find it odd to be asked to defend Mr Sonko when I have not had the benefit of knowing the evidence in advance to prepare for the trial,” Dr Khaminwa.

Besides the court’s refusal to adjourn, Dr Khaminwa also took issue with Mr Ogoti’s order that Mr Sonko must sit through the case yet he had been ordered by six doctors to rest for 14 days when he was discharged from Nairobi Hospital on March 11.

The case proceeded later at 3pm with no advocates present for Mr Sonko.