ODM under fire for defending graft

January 6, 2011 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya Jan 6 – The Party of National Unity on Thursday came out in defence of the Kenya Anti Corruption Commission (KACC) which has been accused of being impartial in the war against corruption.

The party rubbished claims by ODM MPs that the war on corruption was being politicised following charges against Industrialisation Minister Henry Kosgey.

PNU told ODM MPs to let the Commission conduct its work independently.

Nominated MP George Nyamweya scoffed at "threats by some ODM MPs to disband the Commission terming it a retrogressive move.“

We must begin to learn to respect our institutions and support the people we appoint to these offices,” said Mr Nyamweya, who is the vice chairperson in charge of legal and constitutional affairs.

Kigumo MP Jamleck Kamau added: “let’s stop being emotional about the issue. Those who loot do it for their own benefit and not for their parties or communities,\’ Mr Kamau said.

He said defending those accused of corruption amounted to abetting the same vice the country has fought so hard to eliminate.

A section of ODM MPs led by nominated MP Rachel Shebesh on Wednesday reacted angrily to the prosecution of Mr Kosgey terming it ‘political’.

The MPs had claimed that Mr Kosgey\’s case was as a result of plot coordinated from the Office of the Head of Civil Service which prepared a dossier and handed it to the Ndaragua MP Jeremiah Kioni to raise in Parliament.

Mr Kioni who is PNU Deputy Organising Secretary said ODM should allow those accused to defend themselves in court.

Acting PNU Coalition Chief Whip Johnson Muthama, had earlier on led six MPs at a news briefing where they trashed the claims by the ODM MPs.

“We want a government that is not tainted; we want a corruption free country, we are also demanding that all those named or are suspected to be involved or to have overseen corrupt dealing to leave public office.” Mr Muthama added:

“Whoever follows Henry Kosgey even if they come from the PNU camp will have to carry their own cross” The MPs told a media conference at Parliament buildings.

They said they fully supported the work of the anti-graft agency and called on their ODM counterparts to respect the rule of law and allow leaders accused of corruption to face justice.

Kinangop MP David Ngugi added: “Corruption should be fought from all angles because it is evil and it is a crime against the people of Kenya.”

The MPs vowed to shoot down a censure Motion against KACC which some ODM MPs have threatened to bring to Parliament.

The MPs further challenged PM Raila Odinga who is also the ODM Party Leader to reaffirm his party’s commitment to fight graft in the government and the country saying that Prof Patrick Lumumba has performed better than his predecessors.

Meanwhile, Ol Kalou MP Erastus Mureithi says the war on corruption is being carried out for the interest of the public and should not be seen as targeting any specific party or individuals.

The legislator has hailed the Kenya Anti Corruption Commission for not sparing the ‘big fish’ in the war against corruption Mr Kosgey was charged with abuse of office.

“This is not about politics but a war against a vice that has left most of the Kenyan people without services from the government. The Commission should be let free to conduct its investigations as required by law,” he noted.

Speaking to Capital News, the Ol Kalou MP said it was shameful for ODM MPs to publicly defend leaders implicated in corruption instead of letting the courts clear them.

Mr Mureithi is now urging the KACC to speed up investigations into misappropriation of funds meant for the resettlement of Internally Displaced Persons.


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