Garissa governor Ali Korane has been released on a Sh3.25 million cash bail or Sh5 million bond.
The county boss was on Tuesday charged with misappropriation of Sh233 million World Bank grants while appearing before Chief Magistrate Douglas Ogoti.
Korane and four others denied the conspiracy to commit an economic crime of fraud charges.
He has also been charged with willful failure to comply with the law relating to the management of funds.
Korane has been ordered to deposit his travel documents with the court and has been barred from accessing his county office.
His lawyer Ahmed Nasir Abdullahi asked the court to grant his client reasonable bail, noting that there is no crime in the charge sheet.
“There is no crime in this charge sheet. There is no charge that says the money was lost or stolen. We will show in the trial that there is no offense as claimed by the prosecution,” he said.
“It’s unfortunate that there is no evidence at this stage so that we can show the court.”
According to DPP Noordin Haji who okayed Korane’s prosecution last Thursday, the monies donated were meant for the construction of Qorahey market, recarpeting of Garissa CBD roads and putting up of pedestrian walkways and setting up of drainages, were diverted between February and September 2019.
Haji also said that Korane gave up his mandate of running the county financial affairs, leading to lack of oversight.
“Ali Korane being the governor of Garissa county since August 21, 2017 was the chief executive of the said county government and mandated to provide leadership in governance and development, be accountable for the management and use of county resources,” said Haji.
“He also failed to ensure the administration of grant funds in accordance with the relevant provision of the law, leading to misappropriation of grant funds by county officials.”