KPA boss Manduku freed over DPP, DCI confusion

KPA boss Manduku freed over DPP, DCI confusion

It would appear that there are simmering differences between the offices of the DPP and DCI if the display at court on Tuesday was anything to go by.

After arresting Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) Managing Director Daniel Manduku and KRA Commissioner for Customs Kevin Safari over alleged tender fraud, DCI officers produced the two in court ambushing their DPP colleagues who had no clue.

Caught off guard, the prosecution could not press charges, in fact expressing dismay at the arraignment of the duo.

Manduku and Safari did not take plea instead they were freed after the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) recalled the file for review.

In a fresh probe, Manduku was arrested for unlawfully gazetting Mitchell Cotts and Nairobi Inland Cargo terminal as KPA cargo facilities yet they did not meet the requirements of a cargo handling facility.

With the DPP taking over the file for review, this will be the second file on the Kenya Ports Authority sitting on the DPP’s desk.

In November 2019, the DCI forwarded a Ksh.2.7 billion investigative file to the DPP on a probe report on the Makongeni Goodshed Project, construction of concrete barriers and the Kisumu Port Revitalization project. Four months later, the DPP is yet to take any action.

Appointed with impeccable backgrounds of being top sleuths in their various fields, the duo enjoyed both public and political goodwill breathing life in the renewed war on graft.

With bravado and zeal, Fridays became a dreaded day of the week in many public offices with the danger of arrests almost always lurking. But the public displays between the DCI and the DPP have been fading steadily.

From the numerous arrests made by the DCI and subsequent arraignment by the DPP, the high profile cases have turned out to be empty canons fired by the two institutions.

Many public and State officers have been hounded out of office on graft allegations but without a single conviction from the litany of cases two years since George Kinoti and Noordin Haji assumed office.

While the DPP has been pointing an accusing finger at the Judiciary, Tuesday’s event has lifted the lid and exposed the likelihood of another culprit — the infighting between two institutions that to a large extent dictate whether a conviction can be secured or not.

With the DCI and DPP at cross-purposes, the war on graft could likely lose steam.