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Get outside help in the relentless fight against graft, but up the game at home

By Editorial | June 8th 2019

It is all too well to seek and get help from outside in the relentless fight against corruption, but Kenya will definitely have to deal with the monster herself. Kenyans must own the anti-corruption push and resolve once and for all to slay this dragon that has stunted growth and derailed progress for many decades.

Just last weekend, Kenyans marked 56 years of self-rule, but the same basic challenges of ignorance, disease and poverty that our founding fathers faced, are still with us. This is largely blamed on shameless theft as a few elite join in the toxic mix of politics, bad governance and private business to siphon public resources.

The corrupt tender-prenuers as they are referred to, usually bankroll politicians during election campaigns period in exchange for favours after forming government. It is this unholy union that Kenyans must dismantle. To achieve that, they must stop seeing political leadership as a competition between tribes and elect leaders based on their integrity and capability to initiate visionary policies.

This weekend, the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP) Noordin Haji and the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) boss George Kinoti turned to the American Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) for help to nab graft lords and drug kingpins. The duo, since coming into office, have gone for the untouchables in the fight against impunity and siphoning of public money. This has endeared them to majority of Kenyans while attracting hate and fear among the corrupt elite. In the past, there was a certain calibre of individuals who, thanks to their public offices or personal wealth, could not be grilled over corrupt dealings. Today, they have nowhere to hide.

However, the fight against the vice is far from being won. Corruption cartels are still at work, devising ways and means of stealing. Others are using corruption money to block prosecution. The anti-graft bodies must up their game, which includes collecting enough evidence to nail graft suspects and secure convictions in the courts. It is not enough to just make arrests and grill the high and mighty then let them off the hook.

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