Betty Murungi now quits Kenya TJRC

April 19, 2010 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Apr 19 – The Truth, Justice and Reconciliation Commission has been thrown into shambles with the resignation of Betty Murungi as Commissioner weeks after she quit her post as Vice Chairperson citing credibility questions surrounding Chairman Betheul Kiplagat.

Ms Murungi sent her resignation to President Mwai Kibaki and informed the embattled chairman.

In her letters Ms Murungi said she was resigning pursuant to Section 16(b) of the Truth Justice and Reconciliation Commission Act, 2008.

“ I am doing so because my position had become untenable,”  she said while thanking the President for the opportunity to serve Kenya in the important Commission.

The crisis ghosting the commission deepened as the government said it would not put more funds to the commission owing to the infighting and reported financial misappropriation.

Responding to the crisis Justice, National Cohesion and Constitutional Affairs Minister Mutula Kilonzo asked the remaining eight commissioners to step down and allow “a new team with the commitment and goodwill” to be constituted.

“They all should resign,” he said.  “They are a disappointment and are being parochial.”

Last week there were reports that the commission had misappropriated millions of shillings through illegitimate payments including elders’ allowances and casual workers’ payments.

The civil society has sustained calls for the resignation of Mr Kiplagat but the career civil servant and diplomat has insisted only a tribunal resolution would hound him out of office.  

The Commission was formed last year to probe historical injustices stemming from 1963 to February 2008 and make recommendations including prosecutions and reparations to victims.

The team appointed in August last year is scheduled to deliver its report in November next year but is yet to make any significant progress as it has spent much of its time settling down, infighting and struggling to fix its image.


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