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Why Pastor Ezekiel Odero wants court to unfreeze his 7 MPesa lines

The Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Noording Haji has opposed the reopening of 28 bank accounts belonging to controversial kilifi Pastor Ezekiel Odero.

Through Senior Assistant DPP Virgina Kariuki, Haji urged Milimani Magistrate Ben mark Ekhubi not to vary his orders freezing Odero’s back accounts and seven mobile money accounts until the High court in Mombasa delivers its ruling on the matter over the same issue.

The DPP explained proceeds in these accounts could have been earned from money laundering activities.

Kariuki, while objecting to an attempt by Odero’s lawyers to unfreeze his bank accounts, stated they obtained the orders with clean hands as they were not aware of the high court matter lodged by the pastor in Mombasa High court.

“We are saying that we want to know the source of the funds. That is why we are here. The judge stated that the ruling will be issued on May 14, 2023. We were not aware they had moved to Shanzu court,” Kariuki said.

Kariuki urged the magistrate to await the outcome of the High court case over the same saying superior court decisions supersede subordinate courts pronouncements.

But the preacher, through his lawyers Danstan Omari, Sam Nyaberi and Cliff Ombeta protested the DPP’s request to await the outcome of the High Court case in Mombasa saying the current freeze orders have grounded the operations of the New Life Church and Kilifi International School.

Omari told the magistrate to unfreeze the accounts of the school claiming that over 3000 children that the preacher’s support and feeds are suffering due to lack of funds.

He accused the state of being insensitive saying that ‘the Government does not give birth to children.”

“The state eats it’s own children and the state does not give birth to any child to know the pain that it inflicts on human beings,” he argued.

Omari argued the state obtained the orders through fraud, misrepresentation and forum shopping.

Ombeta added that in the process of the state trying to be mischievious they misled the judiciary, DPP and that they do not care and the institutions are now exposed to embarrassment

The Kilifi based preacher moved to court saying the freeze orders obtained by the Directorate of Criminal Investigations has brought hardships and has catastrophic trickled down effects.

Odero is challenging the court order that barred him and his associates from withdrawing or transferring the money for at least 30 days as police conduct investigations.

The order was served to respective managers at Co-operative Bank, NCBA, Equity, KCB, HFC and telecom Safaricom.

The frozen bank accounts are in the name of Kilifi International School, which Odero is setting up with 16 bank accounts at Co-op Bank and seven at NCBA. The other accounts are in Equity, KCB and HFC, each registered in Odero’s name.

M-Pesa accounts linked to seven mobile phone numbers belonging to Odera were also frozen.

Police suspect the money was from victims who were radicalised and made to sell their properties and surrender the proceeds to the preacher.

The ongoing investigations on Odero was lodged by police days after Pastor Paul Mackenzie was arrested and detained and is under investigation over claims of helping people to kill themselves, aiding suicide, murder, abduction, radicalisation, genocide, crimes against humanity, child cruelty, fraud and money laundering.

Magistrate Enkubi will deliver his ruling on May 12, 2023.

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