Our daily newspapers, daily discussions, the headlines on our television channels, social media timelines and platforms are littered with news over graft. Corruption isn’t a new thing to many Kenyans; it has become a cliché in our daily vocabularies. It is a thing that started all the way from the post-colonial era though it was in its mild form and assumably, it was unheard of. During this time, it was the parliament that was charged with the duty of overseeing how public funds were spent. However, it never performed its roles effectively due to the emergence of an imperial presidency that usurped all the powers and duties of the legislature through the numerous Constitutional amendments.
In the subsequent governments, the graft levels have been heightened notably by the urge to get richer within the shortest span of time without having to work hard for it. Once you’re holding a government position, you become rich and people wonder how fast one has become rich. The major reason for these heightened levels of graft is negative ethnicity which gives birth to the “patron-client” style of leadership and politics.” We want our own ( tribesmate) who will protect us from Prosecution in case we’re implicated in any scandals.” Thieves in a government will only feel safe when one of their own is in power and us ready to protect them and they’re also ready to do the vice-versa.
Corruption bleeds this country an average of 100 billion Kenya shillings in every fiscal year according to the report from the Office of the Auditor General Dr Edward Ouko. This isn’t the exact figure, it’s bigger than this. This is huge an amount of money especially for a country that largely relies on grants and loans to finance its budget deficits.
The are questions that Kenyans are asking. Are there independent institutions that are charged with the duty of overseeing how money from the public coffers are being spent? Are they performing their functions? Are these institutions working independently without any interferences from any arm of the government? Has any big fish been charged in a Court of Law? Do they have the investigative capacity? Do they have the needed resources in discharging their duties? Is every institution doing its part? Are the holders of these positions the most qualified? These are the questions that if answered correctly then we’ll know exactly where the problem is. Kenyans are willing to know the fate of the tax they pay. From Goldenberg scandal, Anglo-Leasing scandal, Kazi kwa Vijana initiative, the National Youth Service saga, Eurobond loan, mass corruption and looting at the county assemblies presided over by the governors and lately, the Ministry of Health scam.
About a month ago, if am not wrong with my math, a State House Summit on Corruption and Accountability was held on the lawns of the house on the hill. Kenyans had the hope of getting the answers in relation to where their money is and the measures that are being taken by the government to curb the graft menace. Personally, I was glued to the television. NO ANSWERS WERE FORTHCOMING! I then got the reason why the Chief anti-corruption czar John Githongo had to skip the summit. It was all a mess and a shamble. No one willing to take responsibility. Blame game was the order. President Uhuru Kenyatta went ahead and posed a question to the audience in a manner suggesting that he’d given up on the war against graft.
” Sasa mnataka nifanye nini jameni? ”
This is the last thing I expected him to say then follow it by a resignation. Has he resigned? I don’t need the answer, I know it.
Corruption in Kenya is systematic and has been condoned by the state. The state protects the Chief priests of corruption. Those who commit petty crimes are put behind bars and the corruption bigwigs walk scotfree.
The only solution that I recommend is this, let Kenya pull the Chinese penalty on these corrupt fellows implicated and found guilty of looting and stealing from the public coffers.
You know what China does to the corrupt individuals?
Isaac Collins Okech