Vaki’s contempt case proceeds to hearing

Two cases in the Supreme Court involving the Prime Minister’s arrest warrant and Geoffrey Vaki’s Contempt appeals will proceed to hearing this Friday, Sept 2.

This comes after the court on Aug 16 agreed with an earlier Supreme Court decision that two parties in the respective cases require the approval of the Attorney General to engage private lawyers to represent them.

The cases are SCA 7/2016, an appeal that originates from OS JR 485 of 2014, the judicial review into the PM’s arrest warrant issue and the case involving the former Police Commissioner, Geoffrey Vaki, challenging his conviction and sentencing last year for contempt of court.

Both cases have the Director and Deputy Director of Fraud and Anti- Corruption Directorate Matthew Damaru and Timothy Gitua as parties.

The hearing will take place from 9am on Friday, before Justices Ambeng Kandakasi, Dekek Hartshorn and Stephen Kassman.

Parties in the case were told during directions hearing to file and serve their submissions in court before Thursday this week.

The case will see the substantive hearing take place after the Supreme Court on Aug 16 upheld objections from lawyers representing the Prime Minister Peter O’Neill, the state, and Police Commissioner that Damaru and Gitua are unable to engage lawyers to act for them in the case without the approval of the Attorney General.

The three-man Supreme Court bench found that the Attorney General’s approval is necessary as Damaru and Gitua are parties in the case as Police officers and servants of the state concerning matters arising out of their employment.

They relied on the Supreme Court’s decision on Feb 24 this year in the Marape appeal (SC 87/2014) where Justices Derek Hartshorn, Collin Makail and Don Sawong ruled that Messrs Damaru and Gitua did require approval from the Attorney General to engage private lawyers to act for them in the proceeding.

Sally Pokiton