Five witnesses to hide identities in Pastor Ng’ang’a case
Thirty witnesses, five of whom will give their evidence in camera, have been lined up to testify against televangelist James Ng’an’ga, in a case in which he is charged with causing death by careless driving.
Five of the witness are under the witness protection programme and will give their evidence at the Limuru Law Courts in camera on Wednesday after the case started Tuesday.
The prosecution, led by State counsel Alloys Kemo and Catherine Mwaniki, obtained an order from the Milimani Law Courts in Nairobi, authorising concealment of the identity of the five witnesses.
Pastor Ng’ang’a of the Neno Evangelism Centre, has been charged alongside three others over the death of Ms Mercy Njeri, who died at Manguo on July 26 after her car was hit by a Range Rover.
The deceased’s husband, Mr Martin Mbugua Ndung’u, survived with multiple injuries.
The preacher has denied the charges and is out on a Sh1 million bond.
Pastor Ng’ang’a’s co-accused, police officers Christopher Nzilu and Patrick Baya, and Mr Simon Kuria, who is accused of aiding an attempted cover-up, were freed on a Sh100,000 bond each or a cash bail of Sh50,000 each.
Mr Baya, the Tigoni traffic police commandant, and Mr Nzilu of the Kenya Police Air Wing, were charged with neglecting duty on July 26 by failing to conduct proper investigations into the accident.
The latter was further accused of concealing the identity and whereabouts of Pastor Ng’ang’a, whom he knew was driving the vehicle.
Mr Kuria has been charged with covering up for the pastor, but he denied conspiring to defeat justice and giving false information.
On Tuesday, a government pathologist, Dr Peter Ndegwa, who conducted an autopsy on Ms Njeri’s body on July 30 took to the stand to give his evidence.
MULTIPLE ORGAN INJURIES
Dr Ndegwa said he found out that Ms Njeri died from multiple organ injuries that were consistent with a motor vehicle accident.
She suffered injuries on the left shoulder, face and chest. She also fractured both thigh bones and a dislocation of the left knee joint, said the pathologist.
Ms Njeri also had internal bruises on the chest wall, right lung, right side of the chest and her liver had raptured as a result of the impact.
Earlier, Limuru Senior Principal Magistrate Godfrey Oduor had declined an application by Pastor N’gan’ga and Mr Nzilu to have the matter adjourned since all the lawyers were not present.
Through his lawyer, Mr Assa Nyakundi, Pastor N’gan’ga said he preferred his two advocates to be present in the court but one of them, Mr Kioko Kilukumi, was engaged in another case in the High Court.
But Mr Kemo opposed the application, arguing that Mr Nyakundi was able to handle the matter even in the absence of Mr Kilukumi, since, apart from being conversant with the matter since its inception, he was senior to Mr Kilukumi.