MP Wants Graft Case Against Him Dropped, Cites Insufficient Evidence

Nyaribari Masaba MP Daniel Manduku has requested the state to quash a Ksh1.4 billion graft case filed against him over alleged fraudulent procurement and awarding of tenders at the Kenya ports authority. The former Kenya Ports Authority boss via his lawyers now wants his case reviewed and dismissed by the Director of Public Prosecution on grounds that there is insufficient evidence.

The lawyers informed magistrate Victor Wakumile of the letter they had written to the DPP and they asserted that the case may be dropped, preventing the scheduled hearing of the case from proceeding. “We are seeking adjournment for today’s proceedings. We have written to the DPP a letter seeking to review the criminal proceedings. If the review is considered, there is a probability of the charges being withdrawn,” said the defence.

The prosecution acknowledged that they had received the letter after which they asked for more time so that their boss could provide more instructions on the case. “I confirm that we have received a letter from the firm of advocates representing the accused. I have not been able to peruse the letter. We plead with the court to give us time to review the letter and see if it will have any impact on the case,” said the prosecutor.

The request was granted, and the case was rescheduled for November 29. Together with KPA Works Officer Juma Fadhili Chigulu, Mr Manduku was accused of engaging in a project without prior planning, willfully violating applicable laws, rules, and regulations pertaining to procurement, and abusing his position of authority.

They were both accused of planning to engage in fraudulent behavior by approving the Ksh1.4 billion contract for the construction of concrete barriers without first getting budget approval. Additionally, they were accused of acting without forethought in the acquisition of a concrete barrier manufacturer.  Manduku faced four charges while Mr Chigulu answered three.

The offences were allegedly committed at the KPA headquarters in Mombasa between March 29 and August 22, 2019. The court heard that Manduku had occasioned misappropriation of Sh678.8 million on KPA’s annual budget for the 2018/19 financial year by fraudulently undertaking procurement of the manufacturer of concrete barrier works without approval of a budget.

By Lavin Atieno

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