Kenya oil scandal suspects to face law

March 4, 2009 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 4 – The prosecution of individuals involved in the multi-billion shilling oil scandal could kick off by end of this month.

The Kenya Anti Corruption Commission Director Aaron Ringera said on Wednesday that he expected to forward files on the investigations to the Attorney General within two weeks. 

Justice Ringera stated that the commission had made headway from evidence gathered from officials in the Ministry of Energy, Triton Petroleum Limited and the financiers.

“I dare predict we will wind up those investigations in the next one or two weeks after which our legal department will look at the sufficiency of evidence,” Justice Ringera said.

In the scam, the country is poised to lose Sh7.6 billion following the release of 126 million litres of petroleum products from the Kenya Pipeline Company without the authority of local and international financiers.

Justice Ringera in the meantime has said that the commission was also on the tail-end of investigations into the multi-million shilling maize saga.

The KACC Chief Executive Officer said investigators were awaiting an audit into the National Cereals and Produce board ordered by the Prime Minister last month to synthesis it with their reports.

“We have questioned Members of Parliament and other officers who wrote various introductory notes to NCPB. As you know that is a serious matter under the Public Ethics Act, but I don’t want to call anything a crime yet, you wait for our recommendations to the Attorney General,” he told reporters on the sidelines of an East African Community seminar.

The former Court of Appeal judge added that KACC could revive investigations into the Anglo Leasing scam once Parliament enacts a law on mutual legal assistance. Justice Ringera said the AG’s office was in the process of preparing a Bill to legalise the assistance.

“It is the hope of his office the Bill would be introduced in Parliament before June and that might well mean that the statute might overrule the High Court on who can receive assistance,” he said.

A High Court ruling last year prohibited KACC from collaborating with Britain’s Serious Fraud Office in the investigations, stalling the probe. Justice Ringera said the commission had already appealed against another ruling that prohibited it from investigating security contracts approved by the Attorney General.


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