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Citizen Weekly

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

ABABU NAMWAMBA QUIZZED BY EACC DETECTIVES



The beleaguered former chairman of PAC appeared at the Ethics and Anti Corruption Commission (EACC) Integrity Centre offices in Nairobi moments after he was ejected from the National Assembly. His appearance before the EACC opened a new chapter for Parliament. The EACC has notified all 55 members of the PAC and Agriculture committees of the National Assembly to prepare for grilling by its detectives. PAC, whose members traded bribery accusations, prompting a parliamentary investigation, has since been dissolved on the recommendations of the Powers and Privileges Committee that also banned Namwamba and five lawmakers from reappointment to the watchdog. The EACC report named the 26 MP in the committee for allegedly receiving Sh1.5 million from former Interior Permanent Secretary, now Defence Principal Secretary Mutea Iringo, to expunge his name form the committee’s report on unexplained expenditure at the Office of the President. Kangaroo court See also: Ababu Namwamba suspended from house sittings for four days The list of shame submitted to Parliament by President Kenyatta last month also named the 29 MPs in the Agriculture Committee on claims that they received Sh60 million in bribes to remove the names of former Mumias Sugar Company managers from a report on irregular activities in the sugar sector. Speaker Justin Muturi has since ruled that members must answer individually to the claims against them. Wednesday in Parliament, Namwamba ran into trouble with Deputy Speaker Joyce Laboso after he refused to apologise as dictated by the Powers and Privileges Committee, whose findings he dismissed as a whitewash. “I declare for the avoidance of doubt, without an iota of fear, that I shall not apologise for that and I place myself at the pleasure of the chair in terms of attendant sanctions. My respect for the rules and honour of this House is unimpeachable. But my commitment to stand for the truth in the fight against corruption... still stands,” declared Namwamba. “I respect the process that the Powers and Privileges Committee went through, but I do not agree at all with the procedure, the findings and the recommendations of that committee. I consider that whole process to be something akin to a kangaroo court that was merely tendered to confirm a predetermined verdict. That report is a pack of contradictions that will not stand the test of any judicial inquiry.” He shocked his National Assembly colleagues when he defied an order by Dr Laboso that he drops all the claims of bribery against his colleagues and the House.
But before he was shown the door, Namwamba said the claims of bribery were valid, and meant to help the EACC deal with corruption in the corridors of Parliament. He slammed the committee which asked the Deputy Speaker to reprimand him and three of his colleagues, Ahmed Abass (Ijara), James Bett (Kesses) and Omondi Anyanga (Nyatike). Nakuru Town West MP Samuel Arama was not reprimanded, but was required to apologise for discussing committee matters with journalists.