Opposition politician Kalonzo Musyoka has revealed how he tried to save Deputy Chief Justice (DCJ) Philomena Mwilu from being prosecuted on claims of corruption.
Mr Musyoka, leader of Wiper Democratic Movement, said he sought the intervention of President Uhuru Kenyatta, who had travelled to the US to meet President Donald Trump at the White House.
Investigative agencies claim DCJ Mwilu unlawfully received Sh12 million from Imperial Bank Limited and that this amount was credited to her account on October 23, 2013.
They also accuse her of abuse of office and obtaining security by false pretence.
In a Citizen TV interview on Tuesday night, Mr Kalonzo said: “The president told me he was surprised upon learning that the DCJ was going to be arraigned before a magistrate’s court. President Kenyatta told the attorney-general that the issue was critical.”
Mr Musyoka, who graduated with a Master of Law degree at the University of Nairobi in December 2016, was among several top lawyers who appeared at Milimani Law Courts to defend Ms Mwilu.
The former vice president asked the court to block her plea-taking.
Mr Musyoka and other leaders of the National Super Alliance (Nasa) had been accused of doublespeak for protesting Ms Mwilu’s arrest despite urging the government to step up the fight against graft.
On Tuesday, Mr Musyoka defended his decision to represent the Supreme Court judge, saying he was only protecting the independence of the Judiciary.
The Wiper leader was in a team of at least 32 lawyers who represented the judge.
“An independent Judiciary is what this country must always aim to achieve and sustain. Every Kenyan knows the circumstances under which the DCJ was arraigned,” he said.
He added: “If the president himself took up the matter, why would anybody think that the former vice president could not stand in court to defend someone? I’m actually a good lawyer.”
The Wiper boss further said that Ms Mwilu’s arrest and “dragging” before a magistrate’s court was an attempt to demean the Judiciary, which is an independent institution.
“If you arrest the deputy chief justice and arraign her before a junior magistrate, what image are you giving the profession? That is not the procedure,” said Mr Musyoka.
The politician defended his trip to China with President Kenyatta and a high ranking delegation early in September.
The tour raised questions about his role in the Forum on China–Africa Cooperation (FOCAC).
“The president invited me to join the delegation and there was nothing wrong with that. I worked closely with China when I was Foreign Affairs minister and vice president of Kenya. I also value the relationship between China and Africa within the framework of the FOCAC,” he explained.
Regarding the 2022 succession politics, Mr Kalonzo said he does not want to be a “professional running mate” so he will not support Mr Odinga for the third time.
He emphasised that he owes nobody a political debt and asked Deputy President William Ruto not to expect much from President Kenyatta.
“I saw my friend William speaking angrily the other day. I would wish to advise him that in politics you don’t get angry. I offered the same advice to Ford Kenya leader Moses Wetang’ula when he was mad at Raila,” he said.
Mr Musyoka admitted that the coalition let down Kenyans by abandoning its role of checking the government.
“As Nasa leaders, we have never met to state our common position regarding various issues affecting our country. Kenyans expected us to speak for them but we let them down,” he said.
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