Kenya has opened a new chapter in the war against corruption where every individual and organization has been brought on board, President Uhuru Kenyatta has said.
He termed corruption as a ‘standing threat to our national security’, and welcomed the concerted efforts by all sectors in the society to tackle the vice.
“This is the day that we as Kenyans are turning a new leaf in the war against corruption. Indeed as has been said before, this is not a battle that can be won by any singular individual or any singular sector – it must be multifaceted in how we approach it,” President Kenyatta said.
President Kenyatta spoke today after receiving a special report on anti-graft measures and a proposed Anti-Bribery Bill prepared by the private sector. The special report was presented to the President by National Treasury Henry Rotich while the proposed Anti-Bribery Bill was handed over by Kenya Private Sector Alliance (KEPSA) Chairman Dennis Awori.
“I think today marks a new beginning. I want to begin by first thanking the private sector, who have worked in conjunction with the Government to come up with various recommendations and I give them my assurance that my Government will implement those recommendations to the letter – that, we shall do,” said the President.
He thanked the various arms of Government that have also joined to deal with some of the inadequacies that hamper the fight to eradicate corruption.
“Indeed it is my hope that as a result of that bold collaboration we should be able to see very clearly results coming out and cases being successfully prosecuted and those who have committed crimes being held to account in accordance with our desire as a people and as a nation,’ he said.
The President made it clear that the private sector must play their role in the war graft, saying 70 per cent of corruption in the country is in the procurement departments which do business with the private sector.
“Procurement departments involve none other than the private sector, because Government does not do business with itself, it does business with the private sector,” said the President.
He said religious leaders must also come on board in the anti-graft battle.
“They must come on board in terms of encouraging correct values and virtues amongst our citizens,” the President said.
He outlined a raft of measures that both the Government and the private sector will take to starve corruption and consign it to oblivion, saying the media also have a role in combating the vice.
“The media has a role in joining us and highlighting areas of corruption. We have agreed that they must also be accountable and give the relevant agencies the evidence required to prosecute the case because you cannot tame corruption unless you have evidence,” the President said.
Senate Speaker Ekwe Ethuro said the national parliament will play its role effectively by ensuring enabling legal framework is put in place to slay the dragon of corruption.
“As parliament we want to join in this initiative, to participate in it, witness and to play our constitutional duty without fear or favour,” said the senate speaker.
Chief Justice Willy Mutunga the Judiciary will set up special courts to expeditiously deal with cases on corruption and related crimes saying magistrates and judges who will serve in those courts would be thoroughly vetted.
He said although the constitution decrees independence of the three arms of government , it also says in times of crisis and emergencies they collapse into one to jointly tackle issues of national interest.
He said under the structure of the National Council of the Administration of Justice, investigators, prosecutors and Judiciary would ensure efficiency and effectiveness in administering justice on cases of corruption.
Meru Governor Peter Munya who is also the Chairman of the Council of Governors and the Private Sector Alliance Chairman Dennis Awori pledged to support the war on graft saying there is need for all Kenyans to be involved.