New leads to smoke out Anglo Leasing ghost

July 14, 2011 4:05 pm
Kenya Anti Corruption Commission Director PLO Lumumba/ File

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 14 – The Kenya Anti Corruption Commission (KACC) on Thursday revealed that it had obtained fresh evidence in the multi-billion shilling Anglo Leasing scam with the help of authorities in the United States, United Kingdom as well as Switzerland.

KACC Director Patrick Lumumba, who was speaking when he appeared before the Parliamentary Budget Committee, explained that his commission had obtained all the documents required to expedite the prosecution of the Anglo Leasing cases where billions of shillings was lost.

Prof Lumumba, who declined to reveal any further details into the ongoing probe, however noted that his commission was already facing several lawsuits filed in Nakuru, Nairobi, Mombasa as well as Switzerland in an attempt to block its investigations.

“The corrupt don’t rest so in as much as we want to move we can’t move. But for the first time in the history of the investigations of the Anglo Leasing case we have all the documents which we have never had before,” he said.

The candid director further accused the Attorney General (AG) of frustrating the war on graft proposing that his commission gets prosecutorial powers.

He observed that several anti corruption watchdogs in Africa including the ones in Uganda, Zambia and Botswana had powers to prosecute persons found guilty of graft.

“For the moment I can give you three cases that should go forward where the AG has disagreed with us.  I have written to him several times asking him to let the courts decide because he is one lawyer second guessing another lawyer,” he argued.

The KACC however lauded the Director of Public Prosecutions saying he had so far fast tracked the prosecution of graft cases. Assistant Director for legal services Pravin Bowry added that the DPP had helped the commission forward 36 fraud cases to the courts over the past one week.

“I’m glad to say that the segregation of the prosecutorial powers from the AG’s chambers will bear fruit. In the last 10 days we have had about 40 old files that had been stuck at the AG’s chambers being released to us,” Mr Bowry noted.

Prof Lumumba also said that it had been impossible to complete investigations into the Tokyo scam which involved the acquisition of a chancery by the ministry of Foreign Affairs in which Kenya is alleged to have lost more than Sh1.2 billion.

The KACC director explained that although local investigations were complete Kenya required Japan’s permission to commence investigations in Tokyo.

“We sent our legal mutual assistance request to Tokyo in English but we were told it had to be in Japanese so we sent it to Japan for translation,” he explained.

“But two weeks ago they told us that they need one more month to look into our papers before allowing us to get into Japanese territory for our investigations,” added Prof Lumumba.

The KACC further announced that it had commenced investigations into the sugar industry arguing that it was being mismanaged by corrupt cartels.

Prof Lumumba also said that his commission was investigating the Sony sugar company, the Chemelil sugar company as well as Mumias and Nzoia companies.

“We have special focus on the sugar industry but not just Nzoia Sugar Company; all of them because the cartels there are major and hopefully we will soon cover some useful ground,” he said.

Committee member Naivasha MP John Mututho had earlier accused the KACC of slackening in the war against mega corruption scandals. His sentiments were shared by Eldama Ravine MP Moses Lesonet.

“When I look through your presentation, I do not see the big scandals which I thought were part of your target. Notably Nzoia Sugar Company where the government has so far lost Sh20 billion,” said Mr Mututho.

The KACC further announced that it would soon start investigating the incessant mismanagement and misappropriation of Constituency Development Funds.


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