Pastor Ezekiel Odero asks courts to release Sh100m from frozen accounts
Embattled preacher Ezekiel Odero has shifted his legal battle over the closure of his 28 bank accounts to Nairobi from Mombasa.
The Kilifi based man of cloth has now pleaded with the court to be allowed to withdraw Sh100million.
The amount, he says, will enable him finance school and church activities.
In a fresh suit filed at the Milimani law courts, Odero through his lawyers Danstan Omari and Shadrack Wamboi, said operations at the church and school have ground to a halt.
“The financial overheads of running the New Life Prayer Centre & Church and the Kilifi International School have run into headwings and cannot wait for the 30 days as directed by the court on May 8,2023,” Omari states in the fresh case before a magistrate Ben Mark Ekhubi.
Ekhubi ordered for the freezing of the 28 bank accounts to enable police investigate a ray of criminal activities.
Omari and Wamboi discloses in the fresh case that Odero spents between Sh50m to Sh100m a month in sponsoring for the education of over 3,000 pupils.
The lawyers pleaded with the courts to allow the 28 accounts and seven mobile money lines to be unfrozen to enable the construction of the Kilifi International University scheduled to open its doors to students in October, 2023, to resume.
“We urge this court to reduce the investigation period of 30 days to 15 days to enable resumption of school learning and church operations,” Omari prays.
Ädds he : “That the cash flow issues caused by the freezing of the applicants accounts is causing negative impact on the workers and students at the New Life Prayer Centre & Church and Kilifi International School.”
In the case Pastor Odero has named the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI), Cooperative Bank, NCBA Bank, Equity Bank , KCB Bank, HFCK Bank and Safaricom as respondents.
The pastor who is being investigated over the Shakaola deaths filed the application a day after Mombasa High Court Judge Olga Sewe declined to interfere with the account freeze order.
The application comes a day before a ruling to determine whether the accounts will be re-opened or not.
Omari and Wamboi says the application for review is aimed at arresting the delivery of the rulling following an application by the DPP opposing re-opening of the pastors accounts.
Opposing the re-opening of the accounts DPP says police are probing leads of money laundering.
A senior assistant DPP Virgina Kariuki, urged Ekhubi not to vary his orders freezing Odero’s accounts and his seven Mpesa lines until the High court Mombasa delivers its ruling on the matter over the same issue.
Kariuki, said the attempt by Odero’s s lawyers to unfreeze his bank accounts, stated that they obtained the orders in good faith as they were not aware of the high court matter filed by the pastor in Mombasa High court.
She said that police are investigating the accounts to establish the source of the funds and whether they are proceeds of crime.