21 February 2013

Kenya: Immigration Officer Suspended Over Chief Justice Saga

The immigration officer who attempted to stop Chief Justice Willy Mutunga from leaving the country at the Jomo Kenyatta International (JKIA) Airport has been suspended

Mutunga yesterday issued a statement terming the attempts by the junior immigration officer to prevent him from travelling pending clearance from the Head of Civil Service Francis Kimemia as, "political and deliberate".

The CJ said this at a press conference at the Supreme Court yesterday where he revealed that he had received a threatening letter from the Mungiki Veterans Group/Kenya Sovereignty Defence squad against judges, ambassadors and himself stating that the letter "warns against an adversarial ruling on the Presidential and Deputy Presidential candidacy of Uhuru Kenyatta and William Ruto"

Government Spokesperson Muthui Kariuki said the interdiction was to pave way for investigations. He added that the National Security Advisory Committee (NSAC) that met today, had set up a team headed by Inspector General David Kimayo to investigate the threats made against Chief Justice Willy Mutunga.

Kariuki said the investigation team which also consists of the Director of Public Prosecutions, Keriako Tobiko and Attorney General Githu Muigai will present its findings on Monday next week.

"The Government of Kenya highly regrets that the Chief Justice was subjected to such kind of treatment at the airport." the Government spokesperson said.

He said the NSAC has also noted the allegations of senior government officers being involved in political campaigns adding that any civil servant involved in partisan politics will be dismissed.

Commenting on the threats against Mutunga earlier today, Prime minister Raila Odinga also accused Head of the Civil Service Francis Kimemia and other senior public officers of being involved in Jubilee Campaigns.

The NSAC met this morning to discuss the saga surrounding the threats to CJ and other judicial officers. Head of Civil Service Francis Kimemia called for the meeting after also being criticized of harassing the CJ requiring that he and other judicial officers be cleared by his office before traveling out of the country.

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