On Friday, the Nairobi High Court issued arrest warrants for Mombasa County Executive Member for Finance, Evans Oanda, and Chief Officer for Finance, Gloria Mwasi.

They have taken this decisive action in response to their longstanding judgement debt to Associated Automobile Distributors (K) Limited, which has now accumulated to over Kshs. 67 million.

Justice Jairus Ngaah directed the Officer Commanding Station at Mombasa Police Station to execute the two officials' arrest warrants.

Mombasa county Chief officerphoto

This order comes after numerous failed attempts to compel the Mombasa County Government to honour a debt that originated from a 2008 High Court ruling.

The initial judgement mandated the payment of Kshs. 13,541,815 to Associated Automobile Distributors (K) Limited, a sum that has now escalated due to accrued interest.

The court had previously required the Mombasa County Government to pay Kshs 1,000,000 in monthly installments. This directive has been blatantly ignored.

The debt remained unpaid even after a consent judgment and multiple subsequent orders, including a Mandamus order in 2006 and a warrant of arrest in 2010.

In 2018, the court found former Chief Officer for Finance Maryam Abdillahi Mbaruk in contempt for her failure to remit the judgement debt.

Mombasa county CECM photo

Although an arrest warrant was issued against her, it remained unexecuted by the time she left office. The county said they still need to find a solution to the issue.

This pattern of non-compliance and disregard for court orders has continued with the current officials, Evans Oanda and Gloria Mwasi.

In his ruling, Justice Ngaah stressed the necessity of enforcing judicial orders to maintain the rule of law and ensure accountability in public office. 

He instructed the swift execution of the arrest warrants, bringing the officials before the court to provide justification for not facing a six-month jail sentence for contempt.

In 2000, Associated Automobile Distributors (K) Limited filed a lawsuit against the Mombasa County government.

The lawsuit sought payment for services rendered, leading to a 2008 consent judgement.

Failure to comply with this judgement has resulted in a protracted legal battle characterised by contempt proceedings and unexecuted arrest warrants.

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