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Acting Director of Survey Unfit To Hold Public Office, Court Rules



Senior Lands Officers Mark Muigai (left), Polly Wanjiku Gitimu (centre) and Sarah Njui (right) in court in 2015.

Employment and Labour Court has declared the Acting Director of Survey Pauline Wanjiku Gitimu unfit to hold public office after she was implicated in falsification of records in the controversial land in Karen worth Sh8 billion.

Justice Jorum Abuodha sitting in Eldoret said the allegations against Gitimu were serious and remain unresolved.

“In view of the unresolved issues touching on the 1st Interested Party involvement in fraud and corruption in respect of property known as LR.No3586/3 she is unfit to hold the position of Director of Surveys in any Capacity,” the judge said.

The judge added that to ignore the serious allegations against her and seek to promote her yet they charges remain resolved would fly in the face of Chapter 6 of the Constitution and Section 34(2) of the Public Service Act.

He added that the observation by the Court in the ruling quashing the charges does not affect her status and the position she may be holding in public service.

“However, unless the allegations are resolved in her favour, they remain a reasonable impediment to her being recommended for elevation or appointment to another public office,” the Judge added.

He said Gitimu did not deny that she was subject of a criminal charge where she and others were accused of falsification of land records and the charge was withdrawn following the decision of the Court of Appeal, declaring EACC as improperly constituted at the time.

The Judge said the Court however recommended that her prosecution and that of her co-accused could resume once the EACC is properly constituted. He said the decision of the Court of Appeal did not delve into the merit or otherwise of the charges.

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According to Justice Abuodha, the Commission was reviewing the case with a view to reviving the same case, now that EACC has been properly constituted.

“It is the Court’s view that in order for EACC to recommend prosecution and receive concurrence ODPP and eventually cause the arrest and arraignment in Court of the interested party and her co-accused, there must have been reasonable preponderance of evidence to support the charges. The question whether such evidence could support a conviction or not was

The Judge said since the matter remains unresolved, it is a reasonable impediment to her upward elevation whether in substantive or acting capacity.

He added that her contention that she was to be presumed innocent until proven guilty may not be of relevance at this point since the charges were withdrawn.

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