Rigathi Gachagua, MP for Mathira, has lost Ksh.200 million in court-frozen funds to the State.
The Kenyan High Court ruled that the MP and DP Ruto’s running mate could not prove how he obtained the money.
“Indeed, he admitted receiving from government agencies….there was nothing to show that the contract had been awarded a tender by that ministry…” the court observed.
In its decision, the court stated that there was no evidence that the MP executed the contract in order to obtain the funds.
Simultaneously, the court rejected the claim that the Ksh.200 million shillings were in a fixed account.
Mr Gachagua and Jenne Enterprises Limited were suspected of being involved in a complex money laundering scheme, according to preliminary investigations conducted by the Assets Recovery Agency (ARA).
Rafiki Microfinance Bank holds the funds in three accounts in the MP’s name: one with Ksh.165 million, another with Ksh.773,228 and another with Ksh.35 million.
His accounts were frozen in late 2020, following the conclusion of an investigation into the MP’s alleged embezzlement of public funds by detectives from the DCI’s Serious Crimes Investigations Unit.
The alleged passage of Ksh.12.5 billion through his accounts was at the heart of the controversy.
Rigathi is accused of using proxies to obtain contracts through fraud using 22 companies, with himself as the sole beneficiary.
Kenya Informal Settlements Programme, State Department for Special Planning, Ministry of Health, Bungoma County government, Mathira Constituency Development Fund, Nyeri County government, and National Irrigation Board contributed funds.
During a campaign in the Konyu area of Mathira constituency in June, the outspoken MP promised to recover the money that had been frozen in his accounts if the Kenya Kwanza coalition won the presidency in the August elections.
According to Gachagua, if the Kenya Kwanza Camp wins the election in 2020, he will be able to recover the money that was frozen.
“And you know, if we take over the government… you know, this government frozen my money, and when we take over, the money will be unfrozen,” Mathira MP said during a political meeting in the area.
The proceeds, according to Gachagua, will be used to build infrastructure at his home where men will have fireside chats with him while women engage ‘Mama Gachagua.’
“I built a good house and a small house for them to take their favorite drinks while we chat – sawa?”
“Then I set up a place for women to visit Mama Gachagua and eat porridge while singing and praising.” In order to entice residents, Gachagua said, “And because women love dancing, I will install a kinanda for dancing to.”