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Graft cases to go up in election year, says DPP

BUSINESS
By Brenda Kerubo | August 16th 2021

Deputy Director of Public Prosecution Dorcas Oduor with Director of Public Prosecution Noordin Hajji during the launch of Office of the Director of Public Prosecution Decision to Charge Guidelines and Case Management systems.[Elvis Ogina,Standard]

Crime cases are likely to increase ahead of the August 2022 elections, something the The Director of Public Prosecutions Noordin Haji says has been a historical trend in Kenya.

“A lot of the big crimes, especially corruption, tend to occur just before an election... Criminals find it much easier to perpetrate when they consider that the government is at its weakest point during an election,” he said.

“We will see an increase. And the question is, are we prepared? We are trying to prepare ourselves out of the experience and through strategic means, to deal with this,” said Haji.

He said the workload for the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (ODPP) and the entire criminal justice system would increase even as law enforcers ensure borders remain safe.

Conviction rate

The ODPP is holding joint meetings with the National Police Service and the National Cohesion and Integration Commission.

He said the fight against corruption had spared high ranking senior government officials.

Recent data indicates that the conviction rate of anti-corruption cases increased to 63.16 per cent as of June last year. The overall conviction rate of all the cases in the year 2019/2020 was 92.58 per cent.

The cases include that involving Sirisia MP John Waluke and Grace Wakhungu that was prosecuted and finalised within 24 months. They were fined about Sh2 billion.

Other high profile cases touch on Samburu Governor Moses Lenokulal, former Kiambu Governor Ferdinand Waititu, former Nairobi Governor Mike Mbuvi Sonko, Tharaka Nithi’s Muthomi Njuki and Garissa’s Ali Korane among others.

Though some have celebrated Haji’s approach, others accuse him of skewed prosecutions targeting certain individuals.

He said navigating the tough political environment made his job tough due to interfering with cases and intimidation of witnesses.

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