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Multiagency Approach in the Fight against Corruption Bearing Fruit?

The Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) has announced that it has recovered stolen public assets worth Kenya shillings 25 billion over the past five years. Additionally, the anti-graft body also announced that the agency is currently pursuing forfeiture of unexplained wealth estimated at Kenya shillings 25.5 billion. Impressively according to the agency, it has been able to prevent a possibly loss of public funds estimated at Kenya shillings 30.4 billion over the same period. Additionally, the commission stated that it concluded about 1000 corruption related investigations within the same time interval. The agency in collaboration with the office of the director of public prosecutions (ODDP) secured 169 convictions out of 257 cases which were handled across various courts during the five year period. These announcements were made at a media workshop in Naivasha on Monday 24 May 24, 2021 by the commission’s head of training, Mr. Gilbert Lukhoba.

Fighting corruption is arguably a herculean task, which is one of the reasons government established multi-agency taskforce to complement and supplement their respective strengths in investigations, prosecutions, reporting and recovery of public assets. With success statistics as the ones coming out of EACC, Kenyans may have a reason to believe that the government arsenal against graft shall eventually bear fruit. The cancer of corruption has deeply permeated socio-economic and political fabric of the Kenyan society and therefore requires meticulous stealth and agility not only on the part of government agencies leading the fight but also from members of the public. As a matter of fact, the EACC has often cited Kenyans’ lackluster and tepid posture towards fighting graft through reporting any suspicious dealings to relevant agencies. In its 2019 report on the magnitude of corruption, effectiveness and support for anti-corruption initiatives among other issues, the EACC found out that only a paltry 5.8 percent of Kenyans that encountered unethical conduct reported it while 94.5% did not.

Corruption takes place with closely knitted social networks within and outside of public and private organization. As such, there is usually a person with knowledge of inappropriate dealings within and outside public organizations. If many Kenyans decided to report suspicious dealings and any other unethical conduct to relevant agencies, more success would be realized in the fight against graft. Corruption robs Kenya of the very foundation on which it stands and therefore all Kenyans must rise above parochial interests to fight it by availing reports of suspicious dealings to the relevant government agencies.

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