EACC clears 12 implicated in maize scam, NCPB seeks money from SFR
The Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) has cleared 12 people previously implicated in a maize scandal.
The 12 were part of a group of 62 individuals the commission has been investigating over suspected involvement in maize deliveries to depots.
The EACC wrote to the Agriculture ministry in late January on the matter.
The ministry, in turn, wrote to the National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB) this month indicating that the 12 had been given a clean bill of health.
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The anti-graft agency noted that out of 62 individuals, six had been charged in court while 44 were still under investigation.
The EACC had earlier written to the Agriculture ministry seeking to suspend maize farmers' pay in connection with a scandal surrounding grain intended for the Strategic Food Reserve (SFR) in the 2017/2018 financial year.
The commission had asserted that the suspension was to pave the way for its officials to conduct investigations into allegations of corruption through irregular supplies by farmers/traders and payments by NCPB.
Speaking yesterday to The Standard, NCPB Managing Director Albin Sang said he was aware that several people who had been cleared by the anti-graft body.
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“It is true that 12 individuals have been cleared and one has been fully paid. For the rest, we are working on the payment modalities,” Mr Sang said on the telephone.
He noted that the agency were waiting for the SFR to release money so that the other 11 individuals could be paid.
“We are actually the ones doing the payment and SFR should give us the money they already have so that we can pay the remaining individuals,” Sang said.
The EACC deputy director in charge of North Rift, Jackson Mue, said investigations were still going on.
“The matter is progressing. We will not give more details on the issue because it is active in court,” said Mr Mue.
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Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Mwangi Kiunjuri has in the past maintained that NCPB started receiving maize in October 2017 before his appointment, adding that he was not aware whether due process had been followed in the payment process.