Senators support report seeking to investigate Matiangi, Kipsang over Ruaraka land scam

Education Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang'i (left) with his PS Belio Kipsang. [Moses Omusula/Standard]

Senate yesterday supported a report that recommended two top State officials be investigated for the loss of the Sh1.5 billion Ruaraka land payout.

The report, by the County Public Accounts and Investment Committee, wants Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i and Education Principal Secretary Belio Kipsang held accountable for the loss.

They lawmakers will on Tuesday vote on whether to adopt the report or reject it.

The report accused them of ignoring recommendations of a Quality Assurance and Standards Assessment report that established the land was public.

The committee ordered Director of Criminal Investigations George Kinoti, Director of Public Prosecutions Noordin Haji and the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission to within three months establish why the report was ignored.

“The CS and PS be held responsible and further investigated, and if found culpable be prosecuted for occasioning the loss of Sh1.5 billion in line with Article 226(5) of the Constitution,” the report partly read.

Drive-In Primary School and Ruaraka High School sit on the disputed 13.5-acre land, which Nairobi businessman Francis Mburu claims ownership.

House Majority Leader Kipchumba Murkomen (Elgeyo Marakwet) and his minority counterpart James Orengo (Siaya) rallied their colleagues to support the report.

Mr Murkomen urged investigative agencies to be thorough and prosecute those found culpable.

“We want the DCI, EACC to do a thorough job in this matter. They should not prosecute the big fish just because they want to be seen to be working. Evidence should guide them in their investigations and prosecutions,” he said.

Orengo said: “It will be unfair for us to reject the report as senators because most of the information came from people serving Government. The report is credible and all senators should support it.

"If we pass it, we will show the country that we have no sacred cows,” Mr Orengo added.

Senators Samson Cherargey (Nandi) and his nominated counterparts Judith Pareno and Naomi Shiyonga said the committee did a wonderful job, and it was now up to senators to ensure that its drastic recommendations were implemented.

Earlier, Senate Deputy Speaker Kindiki Kithure, in a communication to the House, said the Powers and Privileges Committee had cleared members of the Moses Kajwang-led team of allegations that they tried to extort the businessman.

The committee concluded that Mburu's affidavits were filed outside the stipulated time.