LAWYERS CLASH

Linturi fails to block public from divorce case, priest takes stand

In Summary

• Priest says he officiated Linturi's marriage on April 8, 2000 at Tigania Parish.

Meru Senator Mithika Linturi, Marianne Kitany and Fr Micheni at a Milimani law court on Wednesday, October 9, 2019.
Meru Senator Mithika Linturi, Marianne Kitany and Fr Micheni at a Milimani law court on Wednesday, October 9, 2019.
Image: ENOS TECHE

Meru Senator Mithika Linturi on Wednesday failed to block a priest from taking the stand to testify in his divorce case against Marianne Kitany.

Linturi had requested the court to hear his case in camera, but Kitany's lawyers objected to the application, saying the priest - Rev Father Jackson Micheni - is not a minor.

They said any attempt to hear this matter in camera would be prejudicial to the public, adding that the Catholic congregation wanted to know whether the priest presided over the matter.

The hearing was allowed to proceed in public.

Micheni took the stand and said he officiated Linturi's marriage - to his first wife - on April 8, 2000 at Tigania Parish. 

The video of Linturi's wedding was played in court as the priest took the court through the ceremony he officiated.

He said it was a Christian marriage and produced the original marriage certificate.

Micheni said the video was taken 19 years ago.

"It was a true marriage between Linturi and Mercy who were young then. As you can see, I have also aged a bit since then," he said.

Kitany's lawyer, Cliff Ombeta, asked the priest to look at the certificate he issued and said his signature was not on it.

One of the witnesses in the marriage did not sign the certificate.

Micheni did not certify the marriage certificate, but another priest certified it in December 2018.

Ombeta asked Micheni whether he was shocked to find out Linturi had other children, to which he answered - no.