EACC recommends prosecution of FKF president, Jirongo over graft

FKF President Nick Mwendwa and politician Cyrus Jirongo. [File, Standard]

Some notable figures are now subject to prosecution over graft-related charges after the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) forwarded 17 files to the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP).

The list of the individuals is contained in the EACC quarterly report covering the period from January 1, 2024, to March 31, 2024.

Among those recommended for prosecution for alleged corruption and committing economic crimes include Football Kenya Federation (FKF) President Nick Mwendwa, former Sports Principal Secretary Peter Kaberia, National Industrial Training Authority (NITA) former director general Paul Kipsang, NITA director general Stephen Ogenga and politician Cyrus Jirongo among others.

If the charges are approved by the DPP, the individuals will face prosecution to answer to graft charges.

Mwendwa and Amb Kaberia are among those who are alleged to have embezzled funds meant for the 2018 African Nations Championship (CHAN).

The EACC lodged investigations into the allegations of Sh1.5 billion tendering process for the design, supply, testing, commissioning and supervision of security, access control, communications, audio-visual, and pitch lighting systems for five stadia in preparation for CHAN 2018.

"Investigations established that Auditel Kenya did not render any services in the five stadia as per the contract. The Ministry of Sports Culture and Arts (MoSCA) officers who were involved in approving the payment, abused their office by conferring a benefit of Sh330,537,997 to Auditel Kenya for services not rendered," reads the report in part.

"Financial investigations established that after Auditel Kenya was paid Sh25,682,893 that was transferred to Restea Enterprises. Restea transferred money to persons associated with the Football Federation Kenya (FKF) president, Leasepath Ltd and Leasetrade Ltd. The Directors of Restea, Leasepath Ltd, Leasetrade Ltd and the FKF president therefore knowingly engaged in an arrangement to receive money from Auditel Kenya with the intent to conceal the source of the said amount yet they knew that the said monies were obtained for services not rendered."

EACC also wants the DPP to charge some officers of the State Department of Culture and Arts, Eng John Kiende Ruga at Sports Kenya and -John Kiende Ruga, and Marcos Gonzalez Puente, the director Auditel Kenya.

Others are Restea Limited and its director Muema Kitheka, Leasepride Limited and its director Antony Mwangi Kimathi, and Leasepath Limited and its director Ephraim Kinyua Muchangi.

Kipsang and Ogenga were found with a case to answer following investigations into allegations of procurement irregularities in tender for the supply, delivery, installation, commissioning, training, servicing, maintenance and repair of sewing machines by NITA to Xponics Limited.

The investigations established that Xponics and its directors used false documents that were attached to their tender document and fraudulently acquired public property amounting to Sh5,388,410.

"Investigations established that the Tender Evaluation Committee failed to use the criteria that was set in the tender document and irregularly recommended the award of the tender to Xponics. The former director general, NITA improperly conferred a benefit on Xponics by authorising a payment of Sh5,388,410.69 to Xponics despite being notified of the procurement irregularities in the subject tender by the Public Procurement Regulatory Authority and without a valid contract," states the report.

It adds: "The director general NITA improperly conferred a benefit on Xponics by approving the payment of Sh5,388,410.69 without a valid contract."

The two are to be charged alongside Xponics and its directors namely Sheila Nyakinyua and James Waweru, members of the Tender Evaluation Committee Patrick Masinde, Festus Musyoki, Joseph Njeru and Eileen Nguthari.

Jirongo together with Kuza Farm Allied Limited is on EACC's radar over the Sh250 million payment received from the Nairobi County Government (NCCG) in the 2019/2020 financial year.

The payment was to be compensation for the acquisition of land parcel no. LR 209/11887 I.R 58301 located in Industrial area, Nairobi.

"Investigations have established that the NCCG paid Kuza Farm Sh250,000,000. The payment to Kuza Farm was irregular since the title of the land in question had been charged to Post Bank Credit Ltd for a sum of Sh1,650,000,000. This meant one of the conditions of the decree was not complied with since Kuza Farm was paid yet the land was encumbered," reads the report.

It further states that Kuza Farm and its director who actively participated in the meeting that brought forth the payment were culpable for unlawfully acquiring public property because they were paid Sh250,000,000 yet the title of the land had been charged to Post Bank Credit Ltd.

Other individuals the anti-graft agency wants prosecuted by the DPP over the land deal are the former Nairobi County government officials among them Lydia Ogwoka, David Ogwaro, and Halkana Waqo.