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Auditor General now drags Uhuru, Attorney General to court

Auditor-General Edward Ouko has moved to court to stop his removal from office over allegations of wastage of public funds.

He has sued the National Assembly, its Speaker Justin Muturi and Clerk Justin Bundi as well as Attorney-General Githu Muigai.

He has also sued President Uhuru Kenyatta.

Mr Ouko wants Mr Muturi barred from forwarding any recommendations made by the House to the President, who is expected to constitute a tribunal to investigate him.

In the case filed on Wednesday, Mr Ouko argues that he was not given adequate time to defend himself, was never told who his accuser is or the nature of allegations he was to face.

Through lawyer Otiende Amollo, he claims his right to Fair Administrative Action Act as well as National Assembly’s Standing orders have been violated.

MALICIOUS

“Given the malicious nature, the unprecedented fast-tracking and the unfair manner that the process was undertaken, he is apprehensive that the process will irreparably violate his fundamental rights and freedoms. It therefore in the interests of justice that this matter be certified extremely urgent,” Mr  Amollo said.

The petition seeking Mr Ouko’s removal from office was presented last month by Mr Emmanuel Mwagonah, who accused Mr Ouko of wasting public funds by accumulating a Sh1 million phone bill on his iPad while he was abroad.

He also accuses Mr Ouko of irregularly authorising the procurement of an Audit Vault software at Sh100 million instead of Sh18 million.

His other allegations are failure to submit reports to the President and Parliament at the end of financial years, giving an audit firm that was supposed to be auditing his office other work, and buying an office at a cost of Sh10 million in Mombasa, which was never used.

In his suit, Mr Ouko claims the petition was presented on February 14, was to be reviewed in seven days to ascertain whether it met all the requirements but was forwarded to the advisory committee within 24 hours.

EVIDENCE

The matter was then placed before the Departmental Committee on Finance, planning and Trade for a hearing.

In this regard, he argues that since he was to defend himself barely 48 hours after the petition came up, he did not have adequate notice to prepare his defence.

Mr Ouko argues that he was never notified on when his accuser would appear for the hearing yet they proceeded to prosecute him without supporting evidence.

“Any time from now, the committee shall forward a recommendation to the President who will immediately suspend him and constitute a tribunal to investigate him,” Mr Amollo said.

Mr Ouko is seeking to quash the decision of the Speaker and Clerk of the National Assembly to commit the petition seeking his removal before Parliament’s Departmental Committee.

He also wants the National Assembly barred from debating matters to do with the petition, that it be declared inadmissible as well as fatally flawed and that the entire proceedings be suspended.