South East Alego location chief, Joseph Ogutu Ojala who was assaulted by goons allegedly led by a member of parliament has vowed to press on with charges against the suspects despite attempts to compromise him.
Ojala said that several emissaries have been sent to have him drop the charges in a bid to save the careers of some suspects but maintained that it will be up to the justice system to determine whether the alleged attackers were innocent or not.
He was speaking at his home in Nyang’oma Kogelo during a thanks giving mass service which was attended by chiefs, their assistants and local community leaders.
The chief ,at the same time, blamed some of his assistants for being behind his tribulations, adding that the duo, that had not visited nor sent any message of sympathy since his attack and hospitalisation, were behind malicious falsehoods that made the legislator unleash goons on him.
Ojala said he had recorded statements with the police and it was upon the authorities and the judiciary to make a decision and deliver justice.
“I do not have power to pardon the MP. I have recorded statement with the police and it is up to the authorities concerned to evaluate the evidence and serve justice. If the system thinks it can let him free, it is up to them,” he said adding however that attempts have been made to compromise him to drop charges for compensation.
The chief told his colleagues in the national administration not to be intimidated by politicians while discharging their duties, adding that they should always be firm and serve the public without fear or favour.
Alego / Usonga MP, Samuel Atandi who the chief accuses of leading the attackers has since denied being part of the team.
He has however recorded statement with the Siaya police in connection with the incident.
He said that prior to the attack, the legislator had visited Siaya deputy county commissioner’s office on four occasions demanding that the DCC writes a letter recommending for his sacking over unknown reasons.
“The immediate former DCC is on record saying that he resisted the attempts as there was no basis” he told the public who included former member of the Siaya county public service board, Dr. Kut Ochogo and Catholic priests, Father Chrispine and Fr. Joseph Odhiambo.
Addressing the occasion, Dr. Kut called on the government to ensure that those behind the assault and attempted kidnap of the chief were brought to book.
Kut said that several incidents where armed youths have been used to beat up perceived opponents of the legislator are still pending with the police.
“Siaya and Alego-Usonga residents in particular are peace loving and are keenly watching the direction that this case will take” he said adding that if the police chooses to bungle the case after being compromised, the locals will have no choice but react in the best way they know.
He called for the arming of the chiefs, adding that as government representatives in the grassroots, their security must be guaranteed.
Holy cross parish priest, Fr. Joseph Odhiambo said justice will have to be served to the chief for the residents to have confidence in the government.
Chief Ojala was last week beaten senseless when hired goons in a convoy of four vehicles raided his home and tried to hijack and force him into a car boot amid beatings.
Among those who have condemned the incident are Siaya Governor, Cornel Rasanga and the County Commissioner, Michael ole Tialal who lamented that the legislator was notorious for such attacks.
Tialal said that a case where the MP raided the Teachers’ Service Commission office in Siaya and assaulted a secretary was still pending after the Directorate of Criminal Investigations headquarters called for the file.
by Philip Onyango