An anti corruption court Wednesday ordered the anti graft agency to release any devices or documents that are not relevant to a case in which they are probing against former Kakamega Governor Wycliffe Oparanya.
The Ethics and Anti Corruption commission had obtained search warrants and seized various items belonging to Oparanya that are linked to alleged improper acquisition of property.
Oparanya in an application before the court says the EACC sleuths seized and carried away documents, computers, mobile phones and Sh2 million in cash.
He argued the search orders did not authorize eacc officers to seize and carry away any document without demonstrating the connection between those document and any alleged crime.
“The orders did not authorize anyone to seize and carry any Mobile phones and computers belonging to other persons who are not parties to the proceedings,” says Oparanya.
He said EACC went beyond the scope of the court orders when they confiscated mobile phones from his children, spouses and workers.
He added the officers were on a fishing expedition and did not know what they needed for their investigations which explains why they cast their net wide in the belief that they will get something useful.
Chief Magistrate Thomas Nzyuki directed both the prosecution and counsels representing Oparanya to have a joint meeting and agree on the documents that are relevant to the case so that they can be retained.
The rest are to be released to the former County Chief.
The case will be mentioned Thursday at 230pm to confirm the status.
Former Kakamega Governor Wycliffe Oparanya was two weeks ago questioned by the Commission detectives alongside his spouses in relation to the alleged embezzlement of Sh1.3 billion during his two-term tenure as Governor of Kakamega County.
According to the anti-graft commission, ongoing investigations indicate that public funds were unlawfully acquired through proxies and associates during Oparanya’s tenure.
“Following increasing media inquiries, the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) wishes to confirm that today, Wednesday, 23rd August 2023, the Commission conducted a successful search on various targets as part of an ongoing investigation into allegations of embezzlement of public funds amounting to over Sh1.3 billion from Kakamega County during the reign of former Governor, Wycliffe Oparanya, and where it was found that public funds were unlawfully acquired through proxies and associates,” said EACC Deputy CEO Abdi Mohamud.
Mohamud noted that the Kakamega County investigation is part of numerous high-impact investigations into loss of public funds that the Commission is undertaking in various County Governments, adding that the operations are at different stages.