Graft fight not negotiable, Felix Koskei says

Head of Public Service Felix Koskei. [Boniface Okendo, Standard]

The Government has reaffirmed its commitment in fight against graft.

The Chief of Staff and Head of Public Service, Felix Koskei, said the graft fight is not negotiable.

Koskei reiterated President William Ruto’s call on corruption, stating that the vice will not be tolerated in any ranks across the Government.

He said that all public officials will be held personally responsible for any breach of the legal and policy provisions governing the exercise of their respective powers in the use of public resources.

“You are responsible for transforming user needs into realities. You assess products, services and suppliers and negotiate contracts to meet the planned needs of your agencies,” said Koskei.

He added: “You are obligated to always act according to the laws, policies and processes applicable, and make procurement decisions ensuring that approved purchases are of a sufficient quality and are cost-efficient.”

Koskei was speaking during a consultative meeting on Thursday, that brought together the Heads of Supply Chain Departments of the biggest spenders within the top-tier public entities.

The meeting aimed at defining the strategy that will anchor the anti-corruption fight with precision.

Mr Felix Koskei said that procurement professionals play an important role in the corruption space, both positively and negatively through acts of omission and commission.

He noted that Procurement professionals, and specifically, the Heads of procurement units can make or break the corruption stranglehold, by standing on the right side of history.

“Your place as procurement officers today, in this administration, with me, your professional colleague, as your Chief of Staff and Head of the Public Service, offers the most strategic opportunity to nip this vice in the bud,” Koskei said.

To design a path for the future, Koskei announced a partnership with the Kenya Institute of Supplies Management (KISM).

He said this provides an opportune moment to learn from the mistakes and craft a methodology that mitigates recurrence.

Koskei said that public procurement is perceived to be more susceptible to corruption when compared to other areas of government, such as tax collection, passport issuance, the judiciary or public utilities.

He reiterated the government’s position to institutionalize the fight against corruption adding that every public officer takes part in the fight against corruption, saying there is no option, but to win the corruption war.