Corruption, fraud and unethical conduct remain the biggest cancers eating into public and private institutions, retarding their growth in the process, Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission CEO Major Twalib Mbarak says.
In a speech at the opening of a three-day training workshop for Corruption Prevention Committee (CPC) members of Konza Technopolis Development Authority in Naivasha Major Mbarak called upon public officers to shun the culture of self-gratification, kickbacks, favouritism, laziness and misappropriation of resources for their institutions realise set objectives.
The Konza Technopolis, he said, is a vital project that carries Kenya’s aspiration to be the regional technology hub, adding that as one of the flagship projects of the country’s vision 2030, it remains the backbone of the development of the African Silicon Savanah. “Your pivotal role in marketing and establishing strong infrastructures and attract investments and create jobs cannot be gainsaid,” the CEO said in the speech, read on his behalf by the Commission’s South Rift regional head Mr Ignatius Wekesa,
According to the World Bank, Kenya’s ICT sector has enjoyed a commendable 10.8% growth since 2016. The sector is valued at $717m and contributes 8% to the GDP. It created 250,000 jobs as at end of 2020 and thus remains a key business accelerator and is the new frontier of the 4th industrial revolution in the 21st century.
Major Mbarak said that the ethics, integrity and anti-corruption training would help the Konza Technopolis CPC to adopt sound ethical practices and realise good governance. He said ethics education is an important strategy in the prevention of corruption and is anchored in both the international legal instruments and domestic laws.
“I have no doubt that the knowledge and skills you will acquire from this training will assist you in staying the course of serving our beloved nation,” he said, adding that Corruption Prevention Committees play an important role in preventing unethical practices in public institutions.
The CPCs set priorities in prevention of corruption within the institution, plan and coordinate prevention strategies, as well as review and take action on corruption reports.
He said the Commission has recorded significant strides in the fight against corruption. During the past five years, the EACC concluded investigations in 824 cases and in close collaboration with the DPP, secured 273 convictions, recovered corruptly acquired assets worth Ksh17.8b and disrupted possible loss of public funds worth Ksh38b.
The Commission also conducted 15 systems examinations and 42 corruption risk assessments for various institutions. It offered 3,654 advisories, approved 133 Codes of Ethics for institutions and state officers and processed 286,301 self-declaration forms for those seeking elective or appointive positions.
Corruption Prevention Committees are established by the Public Sector Integrity Programme to be in charge of corruption prevention in public institutions. The committees are chaired by the CEO of the particular institution and are comprised of heads of department. The Committees secretaries are trained by the EACC as integrity assurance officers.