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December 14, 2018

Orengo wants Qureshi barred from representing Haji in Mwilu case

Lawyer James Orengo consulting with other advocates at the Milimani Law Courts on Thursday./COURTESY
Lawyer James Orengo consulting with other advocates at the Milimani Law Courts on Thursday./COURTESY

Lawyer James Orengo has opposed the DPP's engagement of Queens Counsel Khawar Qureshi as lead prosecutor in the DCJ Philomena Mwilu case.

Orengo says Qureshi, who was appointed to the role by DPP Noordin Haji, lacks certificate of admission.

He told the five-judge bench that the gazette notice effecting the UK lawyer's appointment stated that he was only to prosecute criminal trials at the chief magistrates' court.

The DPP appointed Qureshi to handle the criminal case and the one at the high court isn't a criminal matter.

Read: UK's Khawar Qureshi makes first appearance in Mwilu case 

Orengo, also Siaya Senator, said the foreign prosecutor has no jurisdiction in challenging Mwilu's prosecution at the High court.

The bench consists of Hellen Omondi, Mumbi Ngugi, Chacha Mwita, Francis Tuiyot, and William Musyoka.

But Dorcas Oduor, the secretary of public prosecutions, told the bench that DPP has a right to appoint a counsel of his choice.

She told the court they will not be ready to proceed if Qureshi is not allowed to lead the prosecution team.

"Our office has right to be represented by anyone of our choice. We will not be ready to proceed if Qureshi isn't part of the team," she said. 

Mwilu is facing charges of abuse of office, failure to pay stamp tax, improperly obtaining Sh12 million from Imperial Bank, and obtaining security for a loan by false pretence.

Also read: DPP appoints Khawar Qureshi to lead prosecution of graft cases

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