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Citizen Weekly

Monday, 30 March 2015

RAILA: UHURU EXCLUDED NAMES OF HIS FRIENDS IN GRAFT LIST



Opposition leader Raila Odinga has termed President Uhuru Kenyatta's list of top officials accused of corruption and whom State House has pressed to leave office to pave way for investigations as a game of musical chairs. Mr Raila, who jetted back after a two week-tour of Dubai, China and Germany claimed the President was playing politics by deliberately omitting the name of someone he described as the "High Priest" of corruption. He wondered why the President had failed to sack those he had the power to get rid of in an apparent reference to Cabinet Secretaries and Principal Secretaries and instead admonishing those he had no power over. This cluster would be interpreted to be governors who have resisted the President's call to step aside, arguing that as elected officials, the Constitution provides for the procedure of their removal from office. The Coalition of Reforms and Democracy (CORD) leader termed Uhuru's corruption purge and the requirement that affected officials step aside pending investigations as a gimmick borrowed from his predecessors to "cool public pressure", claiming that soon all those involved will return to office. "The move should convince all that it is business as usual and soon, all those who have stepped aside shall troop back to their seats and make up for lost time. The President is acting as a whistle-blower, not an executive authority," he said. Destroying reputations See also: EACC wants Okemo's appointment revoked He reminded the Jubilee administration of the ill-fated Judicial radical surgery soon after President Mwai Kibaki took over power in 2003, adding that the scenario could recur. "It is a sad reminder of Justice Aaron Ringera and (Senator) Kiraitu Murungi's exits but ill-fated so called 'Radical Surgery of the Judiciary' in 2003 which turned into a witch-hunt and a white-wash whose sole aim was to pack the same institution with loyalists and home-boys while destroying reputations of others through rumours and innuendos," said the CORD leader. The former Premier said the manner in which the Ethics and Anti- Corruption Commission (EACC) list was handed over to the President was unconstitutional, skewed and meant to hoodwink Kenyans, yet nothing was going to change. "We find the so-called report of the EACC a fraud on the people of Kenya. The President's move to table names from the Commission before Parliament and to seek those named to 'step aside', a discomforting reminder that the more things change in our country, the more they remain the same," he said. He congratulated the President for the public apology over past historical injustices. And in response to Raila's claims, Senior Director of Messaging at the Presidency Eric Ng'eno said the war on graft is off on a strong, systematic and large-scale footing. "Understandably, the loudest protests against the President's recent move are from those who have skeletons in their closets. As a co-principal of the immediate former administration, Raila Odinga's office was frequently buffeted by enormous scandals where Kenya lost lots of money," he said.