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Anti-graft agency should own up to being part of a major problem

By The Standard | Published Sat, June 9th 2018 at 11:45, Updated June 9th 2018 at 12:10 GMT +3

Taxpayers have valid reasons to be furious with the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC). For more than a decade now, they have funded the agency mandated to protect them from corruption, but with uninspiring results. Since its creation and change of name over the years, the anti-graft body has baffled many for failing in even the most basic of its mandates.

Billions of shillings have been lost and the EACC has little or nothing to show in exchange for the now waning public confidence in its ability. Recent revelations of grand theft, each scandal larger than the previous, continue to expose the EACC’s soft underbelly.

It is clear that although the commission was set up with good intention, its reputation and conduct continue to highlight the economic scourge devouring the country. It has become synonymous to shoddy investigations, its officers fingered for being part of the problem by being compromised by the very people they are probing. The scent of let-down that many Kenyans feel about EACC has now morphed into the terrible smell of betrayal. Like a rotting limb, the only solution is to rid ourselves of this problematic organ before the whole nation turns septic. EACC stands accused of handing over an incomplete, badly done, score-settling report on corruption to President Uhuru Kenyatta.

In the course of the week, a Senate committee barely restrained itself from calling the agency a money-sucking-failure. Another parliamentary committee recommended that the anti-graft commission be held responsible for the loss of Sh1.5 billion of taxpayer money to dubious, in-your-face corruption.

It is time the wheels are pulled off this train before its sinks the country into more problems. In the fight against graft, there can be no sacred cows.

No one, including the EACC, is untouchable. Its existence in the collective psyche of Kenyans has been an epic fail, and it will mostly be remembered for internal wrangles among commissioners and its unique ability to bungle even the simplest of cases.

Kenyans of good standing should choose to be on the right side of history and call out this organisation that has continuously failed to walk its talk. The bleeding must be stemmed.

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