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Graft claims by envoys baseless, says Foreign PS Karanja Kibicho

COUNTIES
By WINSLEY MASESE | April 16th 2014
Foreign Affairs and International Trade Principal Secretary Karanja Kibicho. [PHOTO: STANDARD/FILE]

By WINSLEY MASESE

NAIROBI, KENYA: The Government has dismissed last week’s corruption allegations by 18 foreign missions saying the claims were baseless.

Foreign Affairs and International Trade Principal Secretary Karanja Kibicho said the envoys were seeking cheap attention in sensationalising issues about the country.

Prior to issuing the statement, the PS revealed that he met some of the envoys at a hotel in Nairobi but they did not single out any governance shortcomings when asked to do so.

Those in attendance during the Friday meeting, according to Dr Kibicho, included Cabinet Secretary for Interior and Co-ordination of National Government Joseph ole Lenku and Inspector General of Police David Kimaiyo.

 “There is corruption and I cannot deny that but they should have provided information and they have to be responsible,” said Kibicho.

Speaking in Nairobi Tuesday during a one-day retreat to strategise on Kenya’s trade and other economic interests in the Great Lakes region, Kibicho urged the envoys to desist from unfair criticism of the Government.

Last week, 18 top Western diplomats and donors in Nairobi warned the Jubilee Government that its failure to tackle corruption was undermining the country’s future.

In a statement sent to the Press and signed by 18 envoys, they urged President Uhuru Kenyatta to take more bold steps in fight against corruption at the national and county levels.

The missions included America, Britain, Germany, Japan, Canada, European Union and International Monetary Fund representatives.

“At the moment when Kenya is restructuring government through the devolution process, attracting investment, expanding trade, creating jobs, and fighting terrorism, corruption is holding the country back.  It is an unwelcome companion and has no place in Kenya’s bright future,” read the statement that also called for “strong commitment” and genuine political will from the Government.

And in the face of recent terrorist attacks and increasing security threats, the diplomats and donors offered to assist in tackling the challenges.

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