NAIROBI, Kenya Jul 19 – A Non-Governmental Organisation where Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) boss Philip Kinisu serves as chairman is under an active probe over suspected money laundering amounting to a staggering Sh5 billion.
Documents seen by Capital FM News show that the African Population and Health Research Centre-Kenya (APHRC-K) came under the spotlight in 2015 by the NGOs Coordination Board.
The matter was captured in an internal memo of 2015 at the NGO Board which said: there were claims of “unfair labour practices, false clean external audits, exaggerated director’s salary and benefits, and appointment of friends to leadership positions.”
The organisation is accused of under declaring sums received in aid to the tune of Sh5 billion over a three year period.
The discrepancies were brought to light by staff at the NGO, who lodged a complaint with the NGO Coordination Board.
The exaggerated monthly pay for the executive director was to the tune of 23,400 US dollars a month, in addition to complaints of employment of four foreigners out of five directors.
“Their skills can be better replaced by qualified locals,” the memo says.
In April this year, the NGO Board wrote to the National Intelligence Service notifying them of the probe against the NGO since the chairman is the head of Kenya’s anti graft agency.
On Tuesday, Kinisu admitted being the Chairman of APHRC-K, but insisted its operations are above board.
“The firm’s records are clean and there has never been a query about it,” he told reporters at a media briefing.
The NGO Board was particularly concerned at the involvement of Kinisu in the Organisation, considering that his “sensitive” position as the EACC Chairman.
“It is my considered opinion that this matter is extremely sensitive and of high magnitude given his (Kinisu’s) position as chair of the anti-graft body,” the letter by the NGO Coordination Board’s Fazul Mohammed says.
The letter adds: “Preliminary investigations into the operations of the NGO reveal possible acts of money laundering, diversion of donor aid, and regulatory mischief.”
Kinisu is already under probe over dealings at the National Youth Service over a company associated with his wife.
Kinisu was a director of the firm, but says he was not involved in its day-to-day operations.
On Tuesday, he pointed at a witch hunt over the emerging allegations, suggesting that he was being maligned and blackmailed.
“People want to pull me down, I can tell you that. They want to disorganize and disorient EACC, which is not how we shall build hope in this country,” he said, “Events in this narrative that I have just given you have convinced me that I am being targeted for intimidation, malice and harassment for having come out to contribute in the fight against corruption.”