EACC boss Twalib Mbarak says corruption cases exist in all 47 counties
The Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) has raised the red flag over deep-seated rot across all county governments.
EACC Chief Executive Officer Twalib Mbarak says that out of the 47 counties, no single county is without blemish.
The anti-graft body claims county governors are key architects of the rampant corruption and are heavily involved in witness tampering to cover up their sins.
Mbarak in essence revealed that graft has been devolved, intimating that the allure of billions of shillings dispersed to county coffers allegedly has county heads on a looting spree.
“All counties have got issues and we are investigating all of them. Out of the 47 counties, we have charged 9 governors…there is no single county that has no case under investigation by the EACC,” Mbarak said in an interview on Citizen TV on Thursday.
Sources within EACC indicate several instances of corruption such as irregular employment and in some instances unqualified personnel enlisted to work within counties.
EACC pointing out that county public service boards have been compromised to employ cronies of senior county government officials without due regard for law.
Underpinning the level of rot within counties, EACC red flagged irregular procurement of goods and services.
The anti-graft agency said all counties are culpable of inflation of prices in procurement departments.
Keen to bypass procurement laws and regulations, counties are said to be using unscrupulous means to award lucrative tenders.
For instance, in Tana River County, a motorcycle whose market price averages around Ksh.80,000 was purchased at Ksh.600,000.
County officials are said to be behind underhand dealings in skewed award of tenders to proxy companies, friends and even spouses.
In return, they pocket hefty kickbacks in an elaborate network to defraud the county and benefit themselves.
EACC has listed governors as the biggest masterminds and beneficiaries of such schemes. The anti-graft body claimed majority of governors were using family members and proxy companies to embezzle county funds.
The commission expressed frustration at prosecuting the county bosses involved in graft, claiming the senior county officials were using the proceeds of crime to compromise key witnesses.
“You have a very key witness in a case that is involving millions of shillings, and the accused silently will hold that person without evidence. This is a poor Kenyan who can be given something small and told usije kortini,” Mbarak said.
EACC says investigative agencies face a herculean task to prosecute such cases. Most of which end up collapsing on technicalities with the corrupt walking scot free despite culpability.
“The law is very clear, you cannot compel somebody to become a witness, what do you do? The DPP will tell you, he has withdrawn corruption cases as a result of witnesses disappearing,” added the Mbarak.