, NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 29 – “It has been confirmed that the three Arms of Government are corrupt” – these were the words of Majority Leader in the National Assembly Aden Duale during a briefing with journalists in his office over pertinent national issues.
The outspoken Garissa Town MP said it was time Kenyans acknowledged that there were challenges and that there was need for urgent action to be taken.
“Corruption is now endemic in all institutions and I am sure even corruption is in the private sector because it does business. But the spotlight should be on the independent institutions that have the constitutional mandate to fight it,” he added.
He said the fact that several Cabinet Secretaries and State officers had stepped aside was evidence of corruption in the Executive, adding that the House was set to commence debate on the Public Accounts Committee audit of the Judiciary accounts which also had a ‘tale to tell’.
He also cited reports from the Parliamentary Service Commission (PSC) which had stated that Parliament could not account for half a billion shillings said to have been lost through fraudulent payments to suppliers of goods over three years.
“I have seen how corruption has penetrated the Judiciary – it is no longer an exclusive for one. Parliament which is supposed to do oversight is also a culprit, when you look at the auditor generals’ report, it is damning,” he stated.
Already the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) and the Directorate of Criminal Investigations have taken up the matter and are expected to initiate action on those found culpable.
Responding to a question over whether the government had ‘hang up its boots’ and given up on the fight, Duale strongly went on the defence, instead ‘pointed fingers’ at the Auditor General, the Controller of Budget, the office of the Director of Public Prosecutions, the Directorate of Criminal investigations and the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission.
“The Jubilee coalition is not in charge of the Legislature and Judiciary, this Constitution has provided five institutions independent of three Arms of Government, in fact they only report to Parliament,” he reiterated.
He however absolved the Jubilee administration from blame over the issue saying fingers should be pointed at institutions with a constitutional mandate to deal with the vice.
He said President Uhuru Kenyatta had showed his commitment to the fight by suspending Cabinet secretaries and State officials linked to corruption further stating that those individuals would not resume work until they were cleared of the charges.
“Some of these ministers were very close to the President and the deputy and to date, those members from the Executive are still under investigation and until they are cleared, no one will come back,” he went on to add.
He further dismissed reports linking the reported cash crunch to corruption saying there was no shortage.
He said the money issues were brought about by the transition from one financial year to another which always affected cash flow stating that the matter would be resolved soon.
But even as the majority leader pointed an accusing finger at investigating bodies, most of them have petitioned parliament to increase funding to their programs to enable them conduct their functions more efficiently but this has yet to be done.
Duale’s sentiments are expected to elicit debate particularly from the opposition who will have found ‘fodder to feed’ since they have constantly spoken on the matter.