NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 14 – Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission Chairman Issack Hassan on Thursday made good his threat to take the Auditor General Edward Ouko back to court over his Special Investigation Report on the Procurement of Electronic Voting Devices for the 2013 General Election.
Hassan returned to High Court judge Isaac Lenaola to complain that Ouko had not complied with the orders he issued a year ago, requiring him to expunge from the report portions that adversely mention him.
Hassan wants Lenaola to compel Ouko to present a revised report, excluding adverse mentions of him, to the Public Accounts Committee which commissioned the report in 2014 and explain why contempt proceedings should not be initiated.
Lenaola gave the Auditor General until July 19 to respond.
When he appeared before the Justice and Legal Affairs and Constitution Implementation Oversight Committees of the National Assembly on Tuesday, an irate Hassan said he would be seeking to have Ouko held to account for contempt given the offensive portion of his report continues to haunt him.
“We want to know whether the committee is now the petitioner, now you are reading the Auditor-General’s report selectively, you are treating us as if he is the gospel truth, he is a liar, we can’t just sit here and listen to you repeat all the same lies by him, it’s not fair,” he said Wednesday in an exchange with JLAC committee chair Samuel Chepkonga.
The ‘liar’ he makes reference to being Bungoma resident Barasa Nyukuri who has petitioned the National Assembly for Hassan and his team’s removal.
The portion of the special investigation report Hassan no longer wants thrown in his face reads: “As the chair of the meeting of 7th August 2012 that charted the way forward for the Government process, he allowed the presence of Tim Colby in the meeting and this is what set grounds for single sourcing of Government of Canada and Morpho Canada which resulted to GOK being supplied BVR kits at inflated prices. He was therefore privy to the single sourcing of the Government of Canada.”
Hassan challenges the above quoted text on several grounds but chief among them is that he was not accorded the opportunity to respond to the charge before a final report was made to PAC.
In May last year Lenaola rendered his judgment on the matter and agreed with Hassan that the Auditor General should have given Hassan a hearing before submitting his final report to PAC.
“It is not enough to say that the evidence and documents are sufficient and that they speak for themselves. The place of the rule of audi alteram partem is clear and should be adhered to especially in an investigation where a person is likely to be named unfavourably,” he found before making this final order:
“An order is hereby issued directing the respondent to delete the information in the second row of page 28 in the Special Investigation Report on the Procurement of Electronic Voting Devices for 20113