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Wabukala: Corruption blocking growth in counties

By Roselyne Obala | Published Fri, March 10th 2017 at 00:00, Updated March 9th 2017 at 22:01 GMT +3
EACC chairman Eliud Wabukala. (Photo: Elvis Ogina/Standard)

The anti-corruption agency says it has completed investigations in 20 counties and concluded 75 corruption cases.

Speaking at the just-concluded devolution conference, Ethics and Anti-Corruption (EACC) chairman Eliud Wabukala said corruption was a major drawback to development in the counties.

The retired arch-bishop announced that among those whose cases had been concluded and files forwarded to Director Public Prosecution Keriako Tobiko are two governors.

Others are six county secretaries, five county executives, (two have been convicted) and three county assembly speakers.

Another 304 cases are still under investigation.

Participants at the conference, which came to a close Thursday, demanded more action from EACC to deter corruption offenders.

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The delegates tasked the EACC boss to explain how he plans to net corrupt individuals who are running the counties’ coffers dry at the expense of poor Kenyans.

“Let’s not focus on the big fish or small fish. It all boils down to the biggest job, (which is) protecting the ethical and moral fabric of this nation,” said Wabukala.

The conference was told of fraudulent imprests, weak internal audits, per diems and others expenses, with delegates calling for prudent use of funds.

The DPP and Attorney General Githu Muigai, who were expected to attend the meeting, did not show up but sent apologies.

Delegates expressed frustration with the slow pace of the war against graft, and accused politicians of sanitising the vice.

“We reward corruption as a country. After the August polls, those accused of corruption will be in office. How can someone own a fleet of Prados a few months after elections?”  posed Richard Bonyo, a delegate from Migori County.

Wabukhala said the commission was conducting lifestyle audits on county officials, but was facing hostility from suspects, which he vowed to defy.

“One’s lifestyle will betray them, as they will do certain things. We have six departments dealing with this matter,” said Wabukala.