Principals pressed to show more commitment to graft fight

July 23, 2011 2:22 pm

, NAIROBI, Kenya, July 23- Representatives of civil society groups are asking the President and the Prime Minister to show more commitment in the fight against corruption by firing all ministers who cannot account for money given to their ministries.

The groups are basing their call on the Controller and Auditor General report tabled in parliament earlier this week.

Speaking to journalists at a Nairobi hotel, Agostino Neto of the Kenya Youth League urged the principals to fire ministers implicated or consider reinstating the ministers who have previously stepped aside from their dockets due to corruption allegations.

“The law must equally apply to all people, that is a simple principle in law, we must choose either to fight corruption and fire the six ministers or we can choose to let everybody eat until the nation dies,” he said

“It is up to the President and the Prime Minister to show leadership,” he reiterated adding that the two principals must send out the right message about corruption.

Other activists accompanying him included from the National Civil society Congress, The Unga Revolution and the Kenya Independent Students Union.

Mr Neto added the rate at which government is loosing money through corruption is alarming and unacceptable.

He further criticised the Kenya Anti Corruption Commission (KACC) stating that it was improper for the public to continue funding the body when it was not realising tangible results in the fight against graft.

“The KACC has not succeeded in prosecuting senior people accused of corruption. Many times they go to court and never achieve anything. Why do we still need it if they do not have teeth?” he posed.

A report by the auditor and controller general shows that six ministries cannot account for up to Sh7 billion.

They include Public Health which is said to have lost Sh3.6 billion, Foreign Affairs (Sh743m), Internal Security (Sh662m), Special Programs (Sh408m), Lands (Sh196m) and Roads (Sh89m).

The activists further promised to mobilise a huge crowd to the courtroom during the mention of the case against their colleagues who were arrested in an aborted protest march to State House.

More than 30 civil society activists led by Okoiti Omtatah were remanded in police custody until July 25 when they refused to identify themselves in court, as they faced charges of creating disturbances.

They were arrested on Tuesday after they staged a protest march towards State House to demand resignation of Education Minister Prof Sam Ongeri over the loss of money meant for free and subsidised education.


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