Governor Joho Risks Jail Term

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Changamwe Member of the County Assembly Bernad Ogutu appears before the court on May 23, 2019.
Mombasa Governor Ali Hassan Joho and Changamwe Member of the County Assembly Bernad Ogutu risk going to jail for six months after they were cited for contempt of court.

Justice Sila Munyao of the Environment and Land Court in Mombasa has directed the two to attend court on March 3, 2020, for mitigation before being sentenced.

According to the Daily Nation on Saturday, February 15, Joho and Ogutu ignored a court order that restrained the County Government of Mombasa from trespassing on a parcel of land belonging to Mombasa businessman Ashok Doshi and his wife, Pratibha.

Changamwe Member of the County Assembly Bernad Ogutu appears before the court on May 23, 2019.

The businessman is reported to have filed an application in court seeking to have Joho and the MCA cited for disobeying the orders and have them jailed for six months as per the law.

Through lawyer Willis Oluga, the businessman and his wife argued that on May 10, 2019, county government officials led by Joho and some leaders from Mombasa hired goons who invaded the land and demolished the gate in breach of the court order.

The plaintiffs further argued that the leaders then held a public rally where they accused Doshi of being a land grabber despite his having proper documentations for the land in question.

Justice Munyao, in the ruling, insisted that the Mombasa Governor was liable to answer before the court given that he had not refuted the accusations made by the businessman.

“There is overwhelming evidence that there was at very least a visitation of the property by Joho and Ogutu contrary to orders of the court. The visitation led to the demolition of the gate and wall of the applicant.

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“Joho has not denied that he was on the suit property, neither has he denied inciting the persons present to undertake acts of vandalism complained of,” the judge was quoted.

For these reasons, the judge insisted that Joho and his co-accused should appear before the court and respond to the contempt charges.

The judge also insisted that with Joho being the head of the county, he was supposed to be on the frontline upholding the law and not disobeying it.

Businessman Ashok Doshi at the High Court in Mombasa on June 18, 2018 moments before he started giving evidence in a suit against CBK and Imperial Bank Ltd.
Businessman Ashok Doshi at the High Court in Mombasa on June 18, 2018.

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