As we call for the immediate arrest and prosecution of the civil servants involved in the massive corruption exposed in the Prime Minister’s office, where funds meant for the noble cause of empowering destitute youth under the Kazi kwa Vijana programme have reportedly been stolen by those in charge, we unequivocally demand that the Prime Minister, the Rt. Hon. Raila Amolo Odinga, takes political responsibility for the scandal, which happened under his watch, by stepping aside immediately until he is cleared through credible investigations, carried out by anticorruption and other law enforcement authorities.
The Prime Minister is no stranger to the doctrine of political responsibility. Indeed, many are the times he has invoked it with evangelical zeal, calling on his peers in similar circumstances to take political responsibility. With pontifical authority, he has cited the case of the Indian Minister for Transport who resigned following a train accident though he was not driving any of the trains involved, as a perfect example of a leader taking political responsibility when bad things happen under his or her watch. According to the Prime Minister, the man in overall charge of transport rightly vacated office to take political responsibility for the accident.
Our demand that the Prime Minister clears his name is also informed by many past scandals that have pointed directly at him but have remained unexplained, including the Triton Oil, Maize, and Mobitelea scandals that had major negative impacts on our economy. In the case of the maize, the scandal was genocidal in that it led to the deaths of many Kenyans through starvation.
Our suspicions that the Prime Minister may not be as blameless as he likes to pass himself off are also informed by the fact that he has surrounded himself with some of the most corrupt individuals in the republic. His permanent secretary and some of his close aides have a history of being mentioned in mega corruption scandals, and we can’t understand why he clings to them, in total negation of his publicly stated principles.
Recently, in a span of one year, one of his main aides, who is a public servant earning a gross income of 250,000/= per month, pulled off suspect major financial transactions that can only be financed through mega corruption. The suspect transactions include: 1. Paying Kshs 1 billion to purchase a hotel in Nairobi; 2. Spending Kshs 1 billion to build a five-star complex in Diani Beach, Mombasa; 3. Using Kshs 45 million of personal money to pay off the mortgage on the Raila Odinga Centre (ROC) in Upper Hill, Nairobi. On top of that, the civil servant bought two top of the range BMWs, a Mercedes and a VX.
The Prime Minister should also account for the Kshs 750 million that was secretly disbursed in the year 2010 by the Ministry of Internal Security and Provincial Administration to ODM through his office but there is no evidence of it on the ground. A similar amount was also clandestinely channeled to PNU bigwigs by the same ministry, and through the same unaudited NSIS accounts, and it has also not been accounted for.
Time is up! We can’t allow these things to continue destroying the Republic. The time to clean up the country has arrived and there will be no sacred cows! Citizens serving in the Kenya Defence Forces and other national security organs cannot put their lives on the line to defend the Republic, by marching off deep into Somalia in hot pursuit of the Al Shabaab yet we let corruption, which is a bigger enemy than Al Shabaab to decimate us!
Rt. Hon. Prime Minister, Raila Amolo Odinga, all along you have been a vocal champion of integrity and we have believed you. You have packaged yourself and led us to believe that you are different from the likes of Prof. George Saitoti and Prof. Sam Ongeri who have refused to take political responsibility for the billions of Free Primary Education funds that were stolen under their watch. Please, Agwambo, put your money where your mouth is by vacating office immediately until you are cleared in a credible process.
Okiya Omtatah Okoiti – 0722-684-777
Kenyans for Justice and Development Trust,
P. O. Box 60286-00200, Nairobi, Kenya.
Date: Sunday, October 23, 2011