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Ngilu out to block trial over Sh8b Karen land, court told

Suspended Lands Cabinet Secretary Charity Ngilu has been accused of attempting to block her prosecution over the Sh8 billion Karen land deal.

Ms Ngilu has filed two similar cases seeking the same relief, according to the Director of Public Prosecutions and lawyers for Muchanga Investments Limited, the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission and a widow, in submissions before the Environment and Lands Court Judge Lucy Nyambura Gacheru on Thursday.

“Ms Ngilu has filed two similar applications in two different courts seeking the same relief — to stay her trial. She is being crafty in her bid to secure suspension of her prosecution,” prosecuting counsel Eshimoshi Shitambashi said.

Mr Shitambash said the land in dispute was being claimed by Muchanga Investments Limited of Horatius Da Gama Rose, Telesource and the widow, Mrs Carmelia Mburu, who says her late husband, former Nairobi Provincial Commissioner Peter Mburu, owned the 134.4 acre parcel.

Lawyer Cecil Miller for Muchanga said: “When she lost her bid to stop the criminal case pending before the anti-corruption court, she filed this application seeking the same relief before this court,” Mr Miller submitted.

Lawyers Paul Muite and Kioko Kilukumi, for Ms Ngilu, asked Justice Gacheru to suspend the trial before the anti-corruption court to enable her settle the ownership dispute first.

“The purpose of this application is to maintain the integrity of this court which is seized of the ownership dispute,” Mr Kilikumi submitted.

Mr Muite said Muchanga wanted to steal a match with the commencement of the criminal case against former managing trustee of the National Social Security Fund Jos Konzolo, who is accused of forging the titles.

The hearing continues Friday.