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Carry your own cross, Uhuru tells Waiguru

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President Uhuru Kenyatta has warned that the anti-corruption crusade will be painful and those targeted should carry their own cross. In a thinly-veiled counter to immediate devolution minister Anne Waiguru, initially believed to be in the President’s inner circle, the President said the corruption purge will not selective.

“Let us now stop the rhetoric and focus on action against corruption,” President Uhuru Kenyatta said. “When the action happens, it will be painful. Let us not hear people claiming that they are being picked on when we act against corruption.”

Addressing the United Nations’ global meeting on corruption in Nairobi, Uhuru also dismissed allegations that the independence of institutions tasked with the duty of fighting corruption have been compromised.

President Uhuru Kenyatta and Anne Waiguru, then Devolution and Planning Cabinet Secretary.

See also: How Uhuru’s relationship with Waiguru got complicated

Ms Waiguru’s lawyer Ahmednasir Mohamed on Tuesday December 8, 2015 claimed that the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) was no longer independent and that “it had become a department in the office of the President.”

Ahmednasir claimed that EACC did not have a case against Ms Waiguru and that an earlier search in her house by sleuths of the commission was only cosmetic.  On Tuesday December 1, 2015 anti-graft officials raided homes of former Cabinet Secretary Anne Waiguru and her Principal Secretary Peter Mangiti in investigations touching on the loss of Ksh791 million at the National Youth Service.

The President said institutions like EACC, Office of Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) and the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) were operating independently. Waiguru’s lawyer Ahmednasir Mohamed had on Tuesday December 8, 2015 claimed that the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) was no longer independent and that “it had become a department in the office of the President.”

Mr Ahmednasir had claimed that EACC did not have a case against Waiguru and that an earlier search in her house by sleuths of the commission was only cosmetic.  On Tuesday December 1, 2015 anti-graft officials raided homes of former Cabinet Secretary Anne Waiguru and her Principal Secretary Peter Mangiti in investigations touching on the loss of KSh 791 million at the National Youth Service.

Also read: Sack Treasury CS Henry Rotich over Eurobond scandal, Raila tells Uhuru

“We all agree that we are facing an unprecedented challenge. But we are more than equal to the task. From the EACC to the DPP, from the DCI to the Assets Recovery Agency and Financial Reporting Centre, our anti-corruption institutions have shown unprecedented unity of action without any compromise of their constitutional independence,” he said.

More than 350 graft cases are in progress – and many relate to some of the highest-ranking members of Government, he said. “This is a war against corruption, not against the small fish.”

Attorney General Githu Muigai said that his office is finalising the draft Bribery Bill before it is forwarded to Parliament for debate. He said the bill would enhance the fight against corruption. Opposition leader Raila Odinga has claimed that the failure to combat graft is not due to absence of appropriate laws but lack of political will to enforce the law.

Next Read: Kenyans react to Bob Collymore’s wealth declaration

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