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Opposition In Kenya Petitions Anti Graft Chief To Resign

In Kenya, the government says opposition Orange democratic movement (ODM-Kenya) will not intimidate it into stopping investigation against its top leadership, this comes after the party organized a protest march which sought to force the government to sack the chief of the anti- corruption commission Justice Aaron Ringera. Some leaders of ODM-Kenya who were implicated in a recent list of people who have been involved in various graft cases, have been questioning the rationale behind the list. The government adds that, investigation would continue, saying Wednesday’s demonstration was meant to pre-empt another list, on land grabbing, that would be released soon.

Meanwhile, civil societies grouped under the Name and Shame Corruption Network (Nascon) want quick prosecutions of all those mentioned in the Anglo Leasing scandal.

Nascon’s national coordinator, Geoffrey Birundu, said Attorney General, Amos Wako, Head of Civil Service, Francis Muthaura and Roads minister, Simeon Nyachae should resign over the scandal.

In a statement issued on Wednesday, Birundu said Wako was adversely mentioned in the Public Accounts Committee on the Anglo Leasing scandal and wondered why his name was missing from the list that Justice minister, Martha Karua read out last week.

VOA English to Africa reporter Peter Clottey caught up with the spokesman for Kenya’s anti-corruption commission Nicholas Simani who talks about the demonstration.

“Yes there was a demonstration yesterday by ODM. And they did come to the integrity center to serve the commissioner with a petition. We did receive the petition but we really don’t want to comment on it. Its really nothing that we would want to say much about it,” he said.

Simani said the commission is not responsible to take legal action against suspects involved in graft.

“One thing I would want to clarify is that, the Kenya anticorruption commission does not prosecute. It’s the attorney general that prosecutes. The mandate given to the Kenya anti-corruption commission is to investigate corruption and all economic crimes. When the files are completed they are forwarded to the attorney general for prosecution. … But what I can say is that, investigations are still going on, on allegations we’ve been receiving. And we are still doing what we are mandated to do,” Simani said.

Reacting to popular belief that the commission’s work is abysmally slow, he said,” As you all know investigations of past crimes takes long because we’ve got to get witnesses, we’ve got to get documentation. Now if it was something that was done in the past it takes a while to go through all those documentation. Certain documentation are not available, certain witnesses are not available, people have moved from one office to the other. That is why the investigations that we are conducting, we want to be thorough with our investigation,” he noted.

Simani continues,” we are not going to be abdicated or forced to go ahead and complete investigations for the benefit of certain individuals no. We want to go on with our investigations, submit files to the attorney general for prosecution when we are sure that we are going to get a conviction,” he said.

Meanwhile the commission launched a three-year strategic plan, which outlines the activities for each of the commission’s directorate.

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