By Sheila Mutua.
The father of Moipei Quartet sisters, Nicholas Moipei, risks spending six months in jail after the High Court in Nairobi on Friday found him guilty of disobeying an active order.
Moipei, who is the chairman of the Kenya Cultural Centre Governing Council, is alleged to have illegally sacked the agency’s acting CEO, Edwin Gichangi, despite the existence of an edict barring Moipei from dismissing the complainant.
Gichangi had gone to court to challenge his sacking, which took effect on July 9, 2018.
It remains unclear why Gichangi was fired, though records show he appeared before a disciplinary committee, and, thereafter, shown the exit door.
On July 5, 2018, the court warned Moipei against sacking Gichangi, who had obtained a legal injunction against his dismissal.
Moipei, according to Justice Stephen Radido of the Employment and Labour Relations Court, disobeyed the directive, amounting to contempt; an offence that attracts a 6-month jail term.
Upon sacking Gichangi, Moipei hired Benson Kimoni to take up Gichangi’s role.
“After considering all the facts placed before it, the court comes to the conclusion that Nicholas Moipei was in contempt by willfully disobeying a valid court order he was aware of,” Justice Radido ruled.
“However, the court does not find Kimoni [Gichangi’s successor] as having been in contempt,” said the judge.
Justice Radido, consequently, directed Moipei to appear before the court for mitigation and sentencing on Monday, July 8.
The court had ordered Moipei to unconditionally lift Gichangi’s sacking, and further ordered for his immediate reinstatement and restoration of all assets assigned to his office.