NAIROBI, Kenya, Aug 4 – A lawyer has filed a petition in Parliament for investigation and removal of Ethics and Anti Corruption Commission (EACC) Chairman Philip Kinisu from office.
In the petition, Albert Ondieki said the continued stay by Kinisu in office will hamper investigations on cases touching on the National Youth Service (NYS), due to his family company’s involvement in supplies at the institution and other government agencies.
He now wants Parliament to “recommend to his Excellency the President to suspend the chairperson of the EACC Mr Philip Kinisu pending the formation of the tribunal to investigate the said allegations and determinations thereof”.
The petitioner said EACC is in limbo after commissioners issued a statement urging Kinisu to step aside to pave way for investigations, with the EACC Chairman saying he will stay on.
Kinisu however insists he ceased to be a director of the company Esaki Limited, which won lucrative tenders worth millions from NYS and other State agencies.
The petitioner disagrees with Kinisu, instead urging Parliament to “interrogate the grounds and refer the petition to the Justice and Legal Affairs Committee to probe the allegations and veracity of the evidence with a view to parliament recommending the formation of a tribunal by his Excellency the President as per the provisions of the constitution to probe the allegations and make findings.”
In the petition, the lawyer states that he is convinced the Chairperson and Commissioner Kinisu did not satisfy the provisions of “Chapter Six of our Constitution and ought not have been appointed if the allegations surfacing now were available to the appointing authority before appointment because they touch on his personal integrity, competence and suitability for the position.”
He maintains that there is clear conflict of interest in Kinisu’s position as EACC Chairman, which “establishes prima facie case in the public court.”
When he first spoke publicly about the allegations, Kinisu dismissed them as “malicious and only aimed at tarnishing his character” while insisting that any Kenyan has a right to do business with the government, in reference to his wife who runs Esaki Limited, a firm at the centre of the controversy.
But commissioners at the EACC have categorically stated that there is clear conflict of interest in Kinisu’s continued stay in office, and insisted that he must leave.