NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 19 – Attorney General Githu Muigai has affirmed the government’s resolve to fight institutional corruption in the country.
Speaking during the swearing-in ceremony of the newly appointed Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commissioners, Muigai noted President Uhuru Kenyatta had personally committed himself to the fight against institutional graft and will not shield anybody from prosecution.
“We in government have investigated and brought before the courts several cases. Not 10, not 20, not 60, not 90, not 100, but several cases which are all in your knowledge. I don’t think there can be a greater commitment than the commitment that the President has demonstrated in leading from the front. I reiterate that this is a serious fight and I hope that the commission would take the cue,” the AG stressed.
Newly appointed Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission Chairman Philip Kinisu said his tenure in office will be marked by the establishment of a framework to ensure an efficient and effective system is in place when dealing with those engaged in corruption.
Kinisu, who has been in the governance sector for the past 34 years and retired as chairman of PriceWaterhouseCoopers (PwC) in 2014, said he was keen on improving the image of the EACC to instil public confidence.
He stated he would adopt a different strategy in the fight against corruption to avoid past pitfalls.
“The necessary systems, procedures and legal provisions are already in place but what is lacking is the implementation. I will, within 100 days, be able to establish what is stopping the commission from executing measures already in place to fight corruption,” he said.
The EACC chairman further emphasised: “People have talked about political will, lack of resources, impunity; in fact this Commission is going to take its time look at what the challenges will be and address them, because we have the power of the law, we have the resources in law and I think we shall be successful.”
Kinisu said he would rely on systems to detect and deal with corruption rather than wait for it to happen.
“We will use the existing systems to ensure that all public officers adhere to them and those who fall out of it will be detected and investigations by the EACC and other agencies commenced,” he said.
He said he would use the anti-corruption war to improve the country’s international corruption index.
Chief Justice Willy Mutunga urged the new team to restore its image by tackling runaway corruption which was recently declared a national disaster.
“You must banish the notion that Kenya is an incurable petri-dish of corruption, and reclaim the public’s faith in the independence, effectiveness and fairness in public institutions. Be ready for political pressure; unfair smear campaigns; public insults; threats to your life; ethnic baits but you must meet these with unbowed personal principle, commitment to objective truth, and faithfulness to the Constitution,” said the CJ.
The anti-graft body has been running without commissioners for seven months after the resignation of the commissioners led by Jane Onsongo. Chairman Mumo Matemu and Commissioner Irene Keino followed suit.