• May 24, 2024
  • Last Update May 23, 2024 10:27 PM
  • Nairobi

Former governor Wa Ira released from remand

Politics

By Peter Ochieng

Former Murang’a governor Mwangi Wa Iria can finally breathe a sigh of relief after being released from remand.

Wa Iria was on Tuesday this week remanded at Industrial Area Remand Prison in Nairobi, having failed to raise a Sh10 million bail.

Appearing before Milimani Anti-Corruption Chief Magistrate Thomas Nzioki on Tuesday, 30th April, 2024, the accused pleaded not guilty to various corruption charges. He was released on a Sh20 million bond or in the alternative pay a cash bail of Sh10 million, the amount he failed to raise.

In an update on Friday, the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) said he will be released following compliance with the anti-corruption court’s bond terms.

The former governor is charged alongside his wife Jane Waigwe Kimani, brother-in-law Solomon Mutura, personal assistant Peter Muturi Karanja and others in relation to tenders for media and publicity irregularly awarded to a company linked to them, known as Top Image Consultants at a cost of Sh562 million during the financial years 2014/2015 and 2015/2016.

Mwangi wa Iria served as Murang’a governor for two terms, from 2013 to 2022.

The former county boss and his wife reportedly directly benefited from the Sh562 million paid by Murang’a ounty government to Top Image Media Consultants Limited, whose directors are Jane Wanjiru Mbuthia and David Maina Njeri.

Part of the money was sent to Mwangi wa Iria foundation and another part used to settle Wa Iria’s loan at CFC Stanbic Bank.

On Tuesday, Wa Iria appeared in court along with his co-accused David Maina Njeri and Solomon Mutura Kimani. All three accused persons pleaded not guilty to the charges.

As part of the court’s directives, all three accused individuals were prohibited from leaving the country without prior court approval and were ordered not to tamper with prosecution witnesses.

Additionally, Mwangi Wa Iria and Solomon Mutura Kimani were instructed to surrender their travel documents to the court. Jane Waigwe Kimani and David Maina Kiama, who were absent from the proceedings, were directed to appear in court on May 7, 2024, to take plea.

The matter will be mentioned on May 14, 2024.

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