The Kenyan high court has dropped murder charges against Public Service and Gender Cabinet Secretary Aisha Jumwa, the Director of Public Prosecutions Noordin Haji has recommended. Jumwa was accused of being involved in the death of Ngumbao Jola who was shot dead in 2019 in Kilifi County.
The move comes after the Director of Public Prosecutions said that he had reviewed the file and found that there was not enough evidence to charge Jumwa with murder. Jumwa has denied any involvement in the death of Ngumbao Jola.
The decision to terminate the case came as a surprise to many, as it had been thought that the case would continue on through the court system. However, the decision to terminate the case was communicated to Mombasa High Court Judge Ann Onginjo on Wednesday morning during a virtual mention of the case. This means that the case will no longer be moving forward, and any possible verdicts or sentences will not be handed down.
State Counsel Vivian Kambaga informed the court today that the Director of Public Prosecutions has decided to turn Ms Jumwa into a state witness. This decision was made after reviewing all the evidence in the case and taking into account Ms Jumwa’s testimony. The DPP believes that Ms Jumwa’s testimony will be essential in securing a conviction against the accused.
But Justice Onginjo raised concerns over the manner in which the decision to withdraw the case against Aisha Jumwa was communicated to the court. He said that the manner in which the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) made the decision without consulting the court was “unacceptable”.
The DPP told the court that he had received new evidence which prompted him to drop the charges against Jumwa. However, Justice Onginjo said that the DPP should have consulted the court before making the decision to withdraw the case.
The judge was forced to set another date for the mention of the case so that the DPP can present the formal letter on their decision and amend the charge sheet. This is a significant development in the case, as it could mean that the DPP has decided to pursue a different strategy in the case. It is not clear at this stage what the DPP’s decision will be, but it is hoped that they will make a decision soon so that the case can proceed.
Ms Jumwa is required to personally appear in court on December 21st, when the DPP will present a letter to the court detailing his decision to drop the charge.
She was charged with the murder of ODM supporter Jola Ngumbao in 2019, but the DPP has decided to drop the charges against her. This means that she will not have to stand trial for the crime.
She was charged alongside her aide Geoffrey Otieno Okuto, who has now been left to carry his own cross. This is a difficult time for Okuto, who must deal with the charges against him while also grieving the loss of his friend and employer.
He is hopeful that the truth will come out in court and that he will be exonerated. In the meantime, he is doing his best to support the family of Ms. Owino and help them through this difficult time.
The two and their supporters allegedly stormed the home of Reuben Katana where an ODM strategy meeting was taking place. This led to the killing of Mr Ngumbao.
The two have been accused of being responsible for the death of Mr Ngumbao and are currently facing trial. If found guilty, they could face the death penalty.