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Kenya: Pressure Mounts on President Kibaki as Githongo Fights on

Kenya’s former ethics and governance permanent secretary John Githongo says he is on the warpath in the fight against corruption. He has promised to expose government officials, including President Mwai Kibaki, with new evidence of complicity in the Anglo leasing scandal. Some Kenyan government ministers have accused Githongo of doing a hatchet job for foreign governments opposed to President Kibaki’s administration.

Koigi Wamwere is Kenya’s Deputy Information Minister. He said investigation into the Anglo leasing scandal is ongoing.

“I think the Attorney General addressed the press and assured the nation and the world that no investigation into the Anglo leasing scandal has been closed. And that the investigations would continue until the culprits have been arrested and prosecuted,” he said.

Wamwere said the government is not shying away from fighting corruption in the country.

“I would therefore then say that the government position is that it is still fighting corruption and that no investigations have been closed as was suggested by the government’s gazette to the effect that investigations of corruption of the ministers, the Vice President in the Anglo leasing scandal would not be investigated any further,” Wamwere noted.

He said the former cabinet minister who has been pointing accusing fingers of corruption at the Kibaki-led government has no moral right to do so.

“It is an expected allegation coming from Prof Anyang’ Nyong’o because he claims that the President was informed about this scandal while Professor Anyang’ Nyong’o was himself still a member of cabinet but he said nothing about it. So here is a person who is inclined into blaming everybody else except his side when it comes to corruption,” he said.

Wamwere said Professor Anyang’ Nyong’o failed to criticize his party leader after he told the country of his intervention, when former President Moi was to be prosecuted on corruption allegations.

“Remember that Prof Anyang’ Nyong’o is a very faithful follower of Raila Odinga who recently shocked the nation by claiming that when the government was investigating former President Moi and was about to prosecute him for the Goldenberg scandal… intervened and saved him from prosecution. So here you have Prof Anyang’ Nyong’o keeping completely quiet on an allegation that has been publicly made by his leader, whom he never dares to criticize, and yet he would criticize the government’s side,” he said.

Wamwere said the fight against corruption could only be won if President Kibaki chooses the right people to fight it.

“I’m on record saying that I doubt very much that the war against corruption would be won and properly executed by the Attorney General, who has been implicated in all the corruption scandals. My belief is that the President must get people to fight this war for him, as long as the people he has in Cabinet have been implicated in corruption scandals. Then, of course, his war against graft would always be doubted, and I have a very strong feeling that it may never take off. So while the President may be sincere, I think he has the wrong troops to fight corruption in this country,” he said.