Senate Majority Leader Kipchumba Murkomen has criticized the Monday arrest order issued by the Director of Public Prosecution Noordin Haji for persons linked in the Arror and Kimwarer Ksh63 billion dams scandal.
The DPP had earlier in the day ordered the arrest and prosecution of Finance Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich, Principal Secretary Kamau Thuge among other senior government officials.
The two and the Chief Executive Officer of the National Environment ManagementAuthority (NEMA) Geoffrey Wahungu have since surrendered to the police and are currently being detained at the DCI.
Speaking outside the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) headquarters in Nairobi, Murkomen termed the report by the DPP a charade.
“I have looked at the charge sheets and I can tell you the entire thing is a charade, ” said the Elgeyo Marakwet senator.
Murkomen, on whose county the projects are located, is representing some of the individuals who have so far been arrested following the DPP’s order.
According to the senator, the arrests witnessed on Monday were mere PR stunts as they are only aimed at satisfying short term political interests.
Kipchumba Murkomen: I can see the deliberate injustice that is being meted on the people of Elgeyo Marakwet County by killing these projects just to satisfy short term political interests pic.twitter.com/pCM750yMLg
— Citizen TV Kenya (@citizentvkenya) July 22, 2019
The dam projects were awarded to broke Italian firm CMC Di Ravenna.
DCI boss George Kinoti confirmed that the accused are being processed for arraignment.
“They are in custody now awaiting to be taken to court. We are looking for more others and they will all go to court.”
According to the DPP, procurement rules were flouted and circumvented in the award of the projects to CMC di Ravenna, leading to the loss of billions of taxpayers’ money.
Others set to be arrested include Dr Susan Koech PS East Africa Community, David Kipchumba Kimosop MD Kerio Valley Development Authority, Kennedy Nyakundi (National Treasury) and Jackson Njau Kinyanjui.
Inspector-General of State Corporations Titus Muriithi, KVDA head of supply chain William Kipkemboi, Paul Serem (manager, engineering services), Francis Chepkonga , Samuel Kimutai , David Juma, Patrick Kiptoo, Elizabeth Kebenei and Esther Kiror of the tendering committee are also set to be arrested.
From the ad hoc technical and financial committee, the following are to be arrested: Moses Kipchumba, Nelson Korir, Isaac Kiiru, Patrick Kipsang, Frederick Towett, Jotham Rutto, Charity Muui, Geoffrey Wahungu and David Ongare.
“The persons we are prosecuting today were mandated to safeguard public interest but failed,” said Haji.
The DPP revealed that the suspects will be charged with the following eight offences.
- Conspiracy to defraud contrary to section 317 of the Penal Code, Cap 63 Laws of Kenya;
- Wilful failure to comply with applicable procedures and guidelines relating to procurement contrary to section 45 (2) (b) as read with section 48 of the Anti-Corruption and Economic Crimes Act No. 3 of 2003;
- Engaging in a project without prior planning contrary to section 45 (2) (c) as read with section 48 of Anti-Corruption and Economic Crimes Act No. 3 of 2003;
- Abuse of office contrary to section 46 as read with section 48 of Anti-Corruption and Economic Crimes Act No. 3 of 2003.
- Committing an offence of financial misconduct contrary to section 197 (1) (o) (i) of the Public Finance Management Act no. 18 of 2012.
- Fraudulent acquisition of public property contrary to section 45 (1) (a) as read with section 48 of the Anti-Corruption and Economic Crimes Act, 2003.
- Knowingly giving a misleading document to principal contrary to section 41 (2) as read with section 48 of Anti- 20 Corruption and Economic Crimes Act no. 3 of 2003 of the Laws of Kenya. 8. Wilful Neglect to Perform Official Duty contrary to section 128 as read with section 36 of the Penal Code.