Deputy President William Ruto has said those found culpable in corruption scandals will be punished irrespective of their status in society.
Speaking at a fundraiser at St Simon and Jude Catholic Church in Nakuru, Ruto reiterated the government’s commitment towards fighting corruption saying that they won’t allow a few individuals to deny Kenyans development by siphoning public funds.
“We have achieved a lot in the past five years and we won’t allow that progress be sacrificed at the altar of a few corrupt officials in government. Such characters must be smoked out and charged for the offences committed,” said Ruto.
The Deputy President assured Kenyans that action will be taken against all officials who will be found to have a hand in the corruption scandals regardless of the position they hold in government.
“This time round no stone will remain unturned. No corrupt official will get off the hook. Public money can’t be missing and after investigations no one is found guilty. The executive will hold its stand regardless of who these culprits are,” said Ruto.
Ruto said that the executive is ready to pay the price to eradicate corruption in the country even “if it is the law that will be changed to ensure senior government officials are investigated without prejudice.”
“The price for being involved in corruption shall not weigh on a political party, a community or an agency involved. Everyone shall have to carry their own cross according to the law,” said the Deputy President.
His sentiments were echoed by Nakuru Senator Susan Kihika who called on the investigating agencies to swiftly move into action and bring to book the real culprits behind the scandals.
Ms Kihika accused a section of leaders of bringing politics and tribalism into the investigations to scuttle efforts of recovering the lost funds by shifting the focus of all Kenyans.
“We won’t allow the culprits and their defenders to hoodwink Kenyans by bringing tribal politics into these corruption cases. The corrupt leaders are sharing the loot with their families not community. Their bank accounts should be frozen and property illegally acquired be recovered from them,” said Kihika.
She accused some of the banks of colluding with the cartels by facilitating mass transfer of funds without raising a red flag on the transactions despite the law being clear on handling huge amounts of money.
“Ordinary Kenyans depositing or withdrawing huge amounts of clean money are made to explain the source and purpose for the money. Banks have been playing double standards by allowing corruptgovernment officials to carry stolen money in sacks. They should be investigated too,” she said.
Kikuyu MP Kimani Ichung’wa took an issue with Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Mwangi Kiunjuri over his remarks on the involvement of MPs in the Sh1.9 Billion National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB) scandal.
Kiunjuri last week said that Kenyan MPs were among 30 top government officials who were being investigated in connection to the scandal but did not name them.
Ichung’wa however termed Kiunjuri’s sentiments as intimidation against the politicians to stop them from speaking against graft in his ministry.
“If there are any MPs being investigated they should be put in the light. Merchants of hatred and graft are using intimidation to cover up corruption and only exposing the small fish. We want names of the big fish in and outside government laid bare for Kenyans to see,” said Ichung’wa.
Area MP David Gikaria called on the Judiciary to support the government in the fight against corruption saying some of the courts have been too lenient on corrupt officials.
“The Judiciary needs to relook into how they handle corruption cases. People are stealing billions and being offered anticipatory bonds. Fight against corruption has to be fought by all stakeholders without illwill,” Gikaria said.
Also in attendance were Charity Kathambi (Njoro), Samuel Arama (Nakuru Town West), Dr Daniel Tuitoek (Mogotio), Ken Aramat (Narok East), Caleb Kositan (Soi), Liza Chelule (Nakuru Women Rep), Kimani Ngunjiri (Bahati) and County Speaker Joel Kairu.
The absence of Governor Lee Kinyanjui at the function raised questions as he has also missed three other functions attended by Deputy President in the area this month.
Governor Kinyanjui has also been keeping off public events attended by Senator Kihika who is poised to face him for governorship in 2022.
Prior to the events it was rumoured that some local politicians had hired goons to heckle him once he attends the events.
No communication was made on the missing of the governor to the event which some of the politicians took advantage of to hammer him politically accusing him of hiding from his supporters.