, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 1 – CORD leader Raila Odinga has vowed to renew his push for prosecution of all government officials accused of engaging in corrupt activities, as the country marks the New Year.
Odinga says a lot of questions remain unanswered specifically on the Eurobond, where he accuses the government of failing to account for Sh140 billion.
“Insecurity, runaway corruption, a wanting electoral infrastructure, wobbly economy whose growth is seen in the stock market and corporate profits but not in the lives of our people and safeguarding the Constitution are some of the most immediate challenges we will have to address,” he stated.
“There is good news in the growing number of Kenyans who believe the country is heading in the wrong direction. It means we have no option but to change course in 2016.”
He says the government must explain how it used the money while pointing out that already, Sh9.1 billion third instalment of the fund has been paid by the Treasury.
Among the queries he has raised is the outcome of a probe ordered by the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) to EACC on the matter.
“The National Government is equally unable to point any infrastructure project funded through Eurobond loan. On 1st December 2015, the Director of Public Prosecutions Keriako Tobiko directed the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission to investigate all government agencies said to have received the money and file a report to his office within ten (10) days,” he pointed out.
“Thirty days later, there is no report and Eurobond business goes on as usual.” The payment of interest on the Sh75 billion component of the loan continues at a minimum of Sh6 billion every six months all the way to 2024. The payment on the Sh200 billion components of the loan runs till 2019.”
By the time the country is done with paying the loan, he said the tax payers will have parted with a minimum of Sh110 billion on interests alone.
The government has since provided information on how the Eurobond funds were used but Odinga argues that the explanation raises more queries than answers.
In his New Year statement, the Opposition leader also lamented that the country’s electoral infrastructure remains wanting a year to the 2017 General elections warning that time was running out.
“Since 2013, the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission has not taken any steps that can convince the public that it will be better prepared in 2017. Instead, the IEBC has started peddling the same old chorus of lacking money to finance its activities,” he said.
He also called on tough security measures to be put in place, to curb further loss of lives.
In 2015, hundreds of lives were lost to terror attacks in Garissa and Mandera among others parts of the country.
For example, he says there is need to devolve some security functions.
“We must also stop believing that terrorism is our only security challenge. Recent events in Narok, which caught the government unawares, indicate very local resource-related security threats that could best be addressed through devolved security infrastructure,” he said.
Odinga further warned that some amendments on constitution will slow down development of the country if not stopped.
“Amending the Constitution through backdoor manoeuvres could easily degenerate into dictatorship as the old order seeks to have its way at all costs,” he cautioned.
He was also of the view that the government should borrow a leaf on how to cut wastage of public resources from President John Magufuli of Tanzania.