A story planted in the media suggests that SUSPENDED Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Felix Koskei is preparing to be formally “cleared” of corruption allegations against him.
The “clearance” will be granted by the “Ethics and Anti Corruption Commission” and the National Intelligence Service. A newspaper claims to have “seen” the documents.
It is standard procedure by spin doctors to leak information for the purpose of testing the waters before a certain action is taken. The reaction to the leaked story then guides the eventual action of the spin doctors. In this case it is clear that a decision has been made to accept Felix Koskei’s “Get Out of Jail Card”. What is remaining is the method of releasing him.
Remember the entire “war on crime” was nothing more than a PR exercise. Hopefully one expects President Obama to commend Kenya for the work on “corruption”. George Bush did thank Kibaki for firing corrupt judges. Needless to say a good number of them returned to their posts and it emerged that far from a surgical operation, it was a desire by Kibaki to stuff the court with his appointees to bring the judiciary under his tight control.
It now looks like Uhuru Kenyatta has embarked on the same journey of securing praises for zero achievements.
Let us examine the case against Koskei: He is accused of allegedly having rented government land at Tigoni and planted 100 acres of potatoes. The farm is allegedly managed by his aide and personal assistant a Mr. Justus Kigen. The common practice in Kenya is for ministers and other high ranking people to avoid having their names in any scandals. They instead employ their aides and relatives to do the dirty work for them. Thus shares in a privileged company getting government business from a ministry controlled by a given minister would be held by some unheard of person. The person would hold bank fat bank accounts and be a majority shareholder in big companies – most of them registered “offshore”.
So there is no possibility of ever finding Koskei’s name in any documents associated with the alleged lease of the farm. He would not be that stupid. The investigation should have focused on the relationship between Koskei and the said Kigen.
If Kigen applied to rent a farm form an entity under Koskei then that is already a conflict of interests. It is possible that the Board of the Kenya Veterinary Vaccines Production Institute knew about the applicant’s position and granted the request. If the Board is claiming that no such considerations emerged while handling the request, then the investigation should not stop but should now focus on the service and goods procurement policies of the said board.
If the board had land to lease, what steps were taken to ensure that the institution got the best offer available? How did Mr. Kigen know that the land was available for lease?
The consequences of taking upon themselves the blame should be explained to the Board so that it understands the personal and individual responsibility of covering up for their boss. It is the minister who appoints board members to this institution and any member who wants to keep his job knows who to please.
Which raises the question: Can the EACC as is purport to “clear” anybody of corruption? The commission is composed of commissioners. Right now there are no commissioners. One resigned after being pressurized on instructions from Uhuru Kenyatta and two others were suspended after they publicly rejected overtures made to them to quit. State House has not denied any of the serious accusations made by the Commissioners.
It is therefore clear that Uhuru Kenyatta wanted the commission to be emasculated. The only reason one can want such a commission out of business is so that certain people can be set free.
According to the CIC chair – Charles Nyachae – the EACC as constituted is a constitutional non-entity. This is a long established legal fact after the lone member Agnes Keino tried to act as “the Commission” and was rejected. Her decisions lacked “quorum”.
We are now being by Keriako Tobiko that contrary to precedent and the statement by CIC Chairman, “There is no legal vacuum. The commission exists as a corporate legal entity and continues to perform its mandate in accordance with the Constitution“.
Note that while Nyachae cited the relevant sections of the law, Tobiko has not. As usual the truthfully ignorant mainstream media journalist did not bother to take Tobiko to task. They did not see that he had been sent to contradict Nyachae. Whether he made sense or not, the idea was to denigrate what Nyachae had said.
Obviously this matter will end up in court. The courts will rule against the position held by Tobiko. The accused will walk. Tobiko will complete serving his term and be ready to be appointed Attorney General may be Chief Justice. A reward for loyal service.