President Uhuru responds to Pandora Papers expose

President Uhuru Kenyatta says he will respond comprehensively once he returns from his US trip. [PSCU]

Barely 24 hours after President Uhuru Kenyatta and his family were named in the Pandora papers as owning offshore accounts and assets, the Head of State, who is on an official visit to Ethiopia, says the reports will enhance the financial transparency and openness required in the country and globally.

"That these reports will go a long way in enhancing the financial transparency and openness that we require in Kenya and around the globe. The movement of illicit funds, proceeds of crime and corruption thrive in an environment of secrecy and darkness,” he said.

The Head of State added that subsequent follow-up audits will lift the veil of secrecy and darkness for those who cannot explain the source of their assets and wealth.

The Pandora Papers revealed alleged assets held in offshore bank accounts by global figures including President Uhuru Kenyatta and his family.

"The Pandora Papers and subsequent follow-up audits will lift that veil of secrecy and darkness for those who cannot explain their assets or wealth,” President Kenyatta added.

President Kenyatta, however, said he will respond comprehensively to the claims after his US trip where will address the UN General Assembly whose chairmanship Kenya has assumed.

“My attention has been drawn to comments surrounding the Pandora Papers. Whilst I will respond comprehensively on my return from my State Visit to America.”

The papers list the Kenyatta family property and alleged offshore banks accounts.

A massive leak of financial documents was published by several major news organizations on Sunday that allegedly tie world leaders to secret stores of wealth, including King Abdullah of Jordan, Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babis and associates of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Reuters reports that the dump comprises more than 11.9 million records, amounting to about 2.94 terabytes of data. 

The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ), a Washington, D.C.-based network of reporters and media organizations, said the files are linked to about 35 current and former national leaders, and more than 330 politicians and public officials in 91 countries and territories.

It did not say how the files were obtained, and Reuters could not independently verify the allegations or documents detailed by the consortium.