Peris Njoki, sister to Nakuru Senator Susan Kihika has been freed by the High Court after serving a two-year jail term.
Njoki had been sentenced for assaulting her other sister, Caroline Kihika after a heated argument regarding their late father’s properties and inheritance.
In a ruling by Justice Rachael Ng’etich, there is insufficient evidence to prove the assault charges. Further, the judge faulted the initial ruling that sentenced Njoki terming it not objective.
“The prosecution’s evidence was not enough to prove that the appellant (Peris) indeed assaulted her sister. Prosecution witnesses admitted that they found the appellant fighting with her sister and even attempted to separate them. Nobody saw the alleged assault. The burden of proof was shifted to the appellant, who must be presumed innocent unless proven guilty,” read the ruling in part as reported by Nation.
The Kihika family has been embroiled in court battles following the demise of their father, former Nakuru MP Dickson Kihika Kimani.
In October last year, the children opted to square off their succession wrangles in court after failing to reach an amicable understanding.
The former lawmaker’s property valued at Sh600 million has been the centre of the wrangles as the widows and children are yet to agree on the distribution of the property he left behind a decade ago.
The lawmaker had left eight wives behind, Nyambura Kihika, Lucy Wangari, Jane Wanjiru, Miriam Warau, Charity Nyambura, Margaret Wambui, Winnie Wanjeri and Alice Kihika at the time of his death, with almost 41 children who have now taken each other to court.
The third wife, Jane Wanjiru was caught up with trying to free her daughter Peris Njoki who was convicted in 2015 for assaulting her step-sister Caroline Wanjiku Kihika.
The alleged assault resulted to Njoki being sentenced to 2 years in prison despite her lawyers and team accusing the judge of being unjust and biased without the option of a fine and failing to consider her side of the evidence.
Through her lawyer, Ms Njoki linked her sentencing to the property wrangles orchestrated by her step-sisters and family.
“The appellant and the complainant have been having an ongoing issue between them due to land disputes and other pending cases. It is clear that the complainant and his brother do not want the appellant to inherit any part of the land parcel and that is why they are making false charges against her,” read the submission by Njoki’s lawyer David Mong’eri.