MERU, Kenya, Sept 12 – A Cabinet minister and two Members of Parliament (MPs) have criticized their colleagues in Parliament for attempting to block the re-appointment of Justice Aaron Ringera as the anti-graft czar.
Public Health and Sanitation minister Beth Mugo, East African Cooperation assistant minister Peter Munya and Igembe North legislator Ntoitha Mithiaru urged their colleagues to instead focus on ensuring that the Kenya Anti-Corruption Commission (Kacc) was given prosecutorial powers.
"Justice Ringera has already investigated various corruption cases but does not have prosecution powers. It is those mandated to prosecute who are letting the offenders go scot free," Hon Mugo said.
The leaders dismissed critics of the move as engaging in cheap politics.
"Parliament needs to be responsible and look at the work he has done and ask whether his recommendations have been carried out," Hon Mithiaru said.
The MPs claimed that those accused of corruption were behind the attempt to block the re-appointment of Ringera and his two deputies.
"This is all tribal politics since they are not citing any particular incidences where the anti-graft tsar has slept on the job," Hon Munya said.
Hon Mugo defended the KACC boss saying he had performed well since his role was only to investigate corruption allegations and recommend prosecution.
"Is there any case that Ringera has refused to investigate?" she asked.
The Dagoretti MP defended the re-appointment saying some politicians were always campaigning ‘as if we have elections next week.’
Hon Munya urged the Parliament to respect the President since he had constitutional powers to appoint senior civil servants.
"We need to approach issues soberly and forge ahead. There is no need to subject him to further interviews. We should respect the Presidency as an institution", he said.
The MPs spoke in Igembe North constituency during the official opening of Theera dispensary and Laare maternity block constructed by the local CDF and Plan International.
The Speaker of the National Assembly Kenneth Marende on Thursday allowed Parliament to discuss the annulment of Ringera’s re-appointment, despite two cases pending in court on the same matter.
Mr Marende ruled out claims by Justice Minister Mutula Kilonzo that discussions of a report by a joint parliamentary committee would amount to sub-judice saying that the House had already started discussions on the matter before two cases against the re-appointments were filed.