State appeals High Court ruling against Matiang’i in Miguna drama

Interior secretary Fred Matiang’i. file photo | nmg
Interior secretary Fred Matiang’i. file photo | nmg 

The government has stepped up its fight against the conviction and fine imposed on its three top officers over the controversy involving lawyer Miguna Miguna.

The government, through Solicitor General Kennedy Ogeto, has appealed orders the High Court issued last week directing the release of the opposition activist.

On March 27, Justice Roselyn Aburili ordered that Dr Miguna be freed from detention at the at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi and be presented in court the following day.

But the next day, when the matter came before Justice George Odunga, he summoned Interior secretary Fred Matiang’i, Immigration PS Gordon Kihalangwa and Inspector-General Joseph Boinnet to appear before him in the afternoon.

However, the three officials did not appear in court, leading to their being cited for contempt and later fined Sh200,000 each.

Mr Ogeto says the rulings by Justice Odunga, which declared the three to have violated the Constitution, erode public confidence required of persons holding their positions.

“The summary declaration that the appellants are in violation of the Constitution renders them straight away and instantly unfit to hold public office and therefore unless a stay is granted, they are likely to lose their respective positions in the public service hence rendering their appeal nugatory,” he said.

In the case documents, he has faulted Justice Odunga for punishing the trio without an application of contempt filed before him as well as no evidence presented.