Distiller Threatens Legal Action Against Nyeri Senator And Mathira MP

The producer of popular alcoholic beverages known on the market as Fly Horse Gin and Diamond Ice, Patiala Distillers K Limited has announced its intention to pursue legal action against Mathira Member of Parliament Eric Wamumbi and Nyeri Senator Wahome Wamatinga. The distiller alleges that the legislators orchestrated the destruction of crates of alcoholic beverages valued at Ksh.6 million on February 26, 2024.

 The controversy stems from an incident on February 20, when Patiala Distillers distributed 400 crates of ‘Diamond Ice’ and 1,000 cartons of ‘Flying Horse’ alcohol brands to a licensed distributor in the Mathira region. However, the alcohol was subsequently confiscated by the Mathira East Deputy County Commissioner (DCC) on February 21, who claimed it was unfit for human consumption.

 After undergoing analysis by government agencies, including the Kenya Revenue Authority, Kenya Bureau of Standards, and the Anti-Counterfeit Agency, the alcohol was declared safe for consumption. Despite these findings, Patiala Distillers asserts that MP Wamumbi and Senator Wamatinga, with the supervision and protection of police officers, led the destruction of the confiscated property on February 26.

 In response, Patiala Distillers has vowed to take legal action against the two lawmakers, accusing them of exploiting law enforcement officers to destroy property in lawful custody. The company argues that the actions of the MPs have instilled fear of financial loss among its stakeholders, including employees who rely on the company for their livelihoods.

 While urging the Independent Policing Oversight Authority (IPOA) to investigate and take action against the involved police officers, Patiala Distillers intends to pursue legal recourse against the MPs for their alleged role in the destruction of the alcohol.

 In defence of their products, Patiala Distillers, through lawyer Dunstan Omari, maintains that their beverages are fit for human consumption and comply with all standard requirements set by regulators such as the Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS) and the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA).

 The incident has sparked debate over the legality and justification of the destruction of confiscated alcohol, with stakeholders calling for a thorough investigation into the matter to determine accountability and prevent similar occurrences in the future.