Obado, his four children and 11 others’ fraud case resumes

Obado, his four children and 11 others’ fraud case resumes

8:07:2024: Hearing of former Migori County Governor, Zachary Okoth Obado’s corruption case resumed today before Chief Magistrate Victor Wakumile at Milimani Anti-Corruption Court, Nairobi.

The two-day hearing focuses on the first prosecution witness, EACC Investigating Officer, whose testimony is to, by and large, disclose how the former Governor and 11 other accused persons including his four children hatched and executed the fraud.

In today’s hearing, the witness produced documentary evidence, largely bank transactions showing how money was moved from the coffers of the County Government of Migori into those of the accused persons.

Prosecution has lined up 59 witnesses to testify in a bid to prove the case against the Governor and co-accused.

EACC undertook investigations in this case after receiving allegations that Migori County Government had made suspicious payments to multiple companies, totalling Kes.1.98 billion. After investigations, most payments were found to have been lawfully made in respect to executed contracts whose works were confirmed in a verification exercise. However, payments amounting to Kes235 million remained unexplained and were deemed to have been fraudulently acquired from the County Government.

Mr. Obado, in a dark suit and blue shirt, following keenly the testimony of the first prosecution witness in Court at Milimani.

The unexplained amount, which the Commission found to be proceeds of corruption, including kickbacks directly sent by some companies to foreign universities as school fees for Obado’s children as well as high-end properties purchased for the family by the said contractors, have since been recovered through Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR), following a civil recovery suit filed at the High Court.

The Commission will dispose of the seized properties by public auction in accordance with the Court orders issued by Justice Esther Maina.

Should the Court find the accused in the ongoing criminal case guilty, they will be convicted and sentenced in accordance with Section 48 of the Anti-Corruption and Economic Crimes Act, 2003, which provides for a maximum jail term of 10 years for each offence and a mandatory fine equal to two times the amount of any public funds lost or benefit acquired by the accused person.

Additionally, Section 64 of the Act bans convicted persons from appointment or election to any public office for a period of 10 years.

Hearing resumes tomorrow when PW1 will continue with his testimony including giving an inventory of key documents relevant to the case that were recovered from the office of Jared Odoyo Kwaga, one of the accused persons.

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