25 witnesses in murder of ODM supporter refuse to testify after Aisha Jumwa’s drop
Witnesses in the trial of Geoffrey Otieno Okuto for the murder of an ODM supporter have refused to appear in court after the ODPP dropped Gender and Public Service Cabinet Secretary Aisha Jumwa from the case.
During Monday’s proceeding in Mombasa High Court, the Director of Public Prosecutions Noordin Haji said “Since the charge against Jumwa was dropped, the witnesses do not want to come to court to testify’, adding that “the investigating officer has been having a difficult time bonding them”.
Haji recommended the withdrawal of the murder charge against Aisha Jumwa back in November 2022.
Judge Ann Onginjo of the Mombasa High Court was informed of the decision to end the case during a virtual mention of the case.
State Counsel Vivian Kambaga told the court that the DPP had decided to make Jumwa a state witness.
Concerns raised by Justice Onginjo regarding how the court was informed of the decision to withdraw the case caused the judge to schedule a new hearing date so that the DPP could present the official letter outlining their decision and revise the charge sheet.
Jumwa was accused of killing ODM supporter Jola Ngumbao in 2019, along with her aide Geoffrey Otieno Okuto, who is now left to bear his burden.
The two and their supporters are said to have broken into Reuben Katana’s house where an ODM strategy meeting was place, killing Ngumbao.
Jumwa has consistently denied any involvement in the victim’s death.
This would be the second case against the CS to be dismissed in less than two months if approved.
In October, the DPP dropped charges against Jumwa in a case that accused her of misappropriation of KES 19 million allocated for the Malindi Constituency Development Fund.