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Ojaamong denies charges of plotting to defraud county during trip to Germany

Busia Governor Sospeter Ojaamong who is facing a Sh8million graft case has admitted before the anti-corruption court that he visited Germany for a familiarisation trip on solid waste management but not to plot how to defraud the county.

Ojaamong who was defending himself in the abuse of office and conspiracy to defraud case told Chief Magistrate Douglas Ogoti that while in Germany they signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Madam-R Enterprises which was to spearhead the solid waste management exercise.

CORRUPTION CASE

“I did not conspire to defraud my Busia County Government money as alleged by the anti-graft agency,” Mr Ojaamong told the court.

The governor who gave an unsworn defence in the corruption case against him and other senior officials of his government told the court that his visit to Germany was not a leisure trip as alleged by the prosecution.

He told the court that during the trip he was accompanied by the County Executive Committee (CeC) member in the Environment docket.

“As the head of the county I led a delegation of officers from my government plus members of the county assembly (MCAs) to German to familiarise ourselves on waste management,” Ojaamong said.

He said while in Germany they visited several places where his team saw how waste is managed to benefit the public.

ABUSE OF OFFICE

He said while in Germany , Madam-R Enterprises organised training for the Busia delegation on waste management.

Besides the county officials, Ojaamong said he also included members of the press to cover their trip abroad.

Ojaamong also denied abuse of office charges. He is also charged with conspiracy to commit an economic crime and engaging in a project without proper planning.

Ojaamong was put on his defence after the court ruled that he has a case to answer.

PUBLIC FUNDS

The governor urged the court to find that he committed no wrong acquit him.

Also charged alongside Ojaamong is County Executive Committee member Bernard Yaite, Finance Chief Officer Allan Ekweny and treasury head Samuel Ombui.

They are also accused of failure to comply with the law on the management of public funds and fraudulent acquisition of public property.

The other accused persons in the case are Mr Timon Otieno, Mr Leonard Wanda, Madam R Enterprises and its directors Ms Edna Adhiambo, Ms Renish Achieng and Sebastian Hallensleben, a German national.

Ojaamong is being represented in the case by Senior Counsel James Orengo and Mr Stephen Ligunya.

Hearing of the case continues.