KIHINGO ESTATE

Magistrate should insist that Hon Gethenji pleads

In Summary

• The hearing of Ndungu Gethenji's forgery case was deferred so that the family can resolve the matter

• Ndungu's forgery case is criminal matter, not civil, so it can only be withdrawn by the DPP

Kihingo Estate employee Frankline Mutegi, Board Secretary Chacha Mabanga and former Tetu MP James Ndung’u Gethenji at a Milimani court on Wednesday, July 3, 2019.
Kihingo Estate employee Frankline Mutegi, Board Secretary Chacha Mabanga and former Tetu MP James Ndung’u Gethenji at a Milimani court on Wednesday, July 3, 2019.
Image: AKELLO ODENYO

Former Tetu MP Ndung'u Gethenji has been charged with forgery after allegedly fabricating false minutes of a board meeting to take control of the upmarket Kihingo estate in Kitisuru. 

The magistrate said in court on Monday that it was a "family matter" and postponed the case until Thursday in the hope that the matter can be resolved. That is not correct.

This is a criminal case brought by the Director of Public Prosecutions. It is not a civil case. The magistrate and the family cannot decide among themselves to have the case thrown out.

It is also not just a "family matter". The false minutes were created to allow Ndung'u to take control of the estate through 60 purported B shares and thereby infringe on the interests of the other 54 Kihingo homeowners.

Finally, filings at the Registry of Companies must be sacrosanct. If they are easily tampered with, business fraud can become endemic in Kenya.

The magistrate should insist that Ndung'u pleads innocent or guilty on Thursday so that the case can proceed. Only the DPP has the power to withdraw this case.

Disclaimer: A director of the Star is a homeowner at Kihingo

Quote of the day: "The mark of an admirable man is steadfastness in the face of trouble."

Ludwig van Beethoven
The German composer was born on December 16, 1770