The Office of The Director of Public Prosecution (ODPP) recovered Kshs. 2.686 billion in form of court fines from successfully prosecuted corruption cases in the last four years, showing impact in the war against graft.
The amount was realized from a select 25 cases, including both high impact and low value cases, reflecting that the President’s focus on the war against graft does not spare anyone, whether prominent or low profile. The total money that the government lost from the corruption cases amounted to Kshs. 2.041 billion; compared to the total fine, hence the government got proceeds of Kshs. 645 million from the cases.
Out of the cases, majority of the offenders were imprisoned for different counts of their offences, resulting to 160 years in the same period. Some of the offenders were barred from holding any public office.
The corruption cases include; abuse of office, embezzlement of public funds, requesting and receiving bribes, conspiracy to commit economic crimes, fraudulent acquisition of public property, conspiracy to defraud the County Government and abetting money laundering.
The war against graft has been at the Centre of President Uhuru Kenyatta’s focus with prominent public servants such as governors, cabinet secretaries, members of parliament, county executives, among other leaders, not spared in the anti-graft war. In his tenure, countless prominent leaders have been prosecuted for anti-graft cases, a deterrent measure towards the rampant abuse of office cases that would have been left untouched in the earlier days.
As the government prepares the country’s annual budget, strategically prioritizing expenditure as per the set objectives, it is vile to think that public servants, empowered to lead citizens and enable development, involve themselves in embezzlement of government funds. Such acts begin with very simple gestures, that can be streamlined earlier to completely stop corruption, hence it is commendable that the ODPP successfully prosecuted both high impact and low-profile cases. The deterrent measures to fight corruption, are so punitive, so that the offenders, their families and the public learn from these measures, and choose a path of integrity rather than a corrupt path.
These cases are investigated under the multi-Agency framework which includes agencies reporting to President Uhuru Kenyatta and supporting the war against graft through collaboration, coordination, sharing intelligence information and networking. Agencies under the framework include the ODPP, Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI), Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA), Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC), Asset Recovery Agency (ARA), Financial Reporting Centre (FRC) and Central Bank of Kenya (CBK).
Every act of corruption, has a direct negative impact on the livelihoods of citizens especially the ordinary Mwananchi. The Kshs. 2.041 billion that was stolen through corrupt means, could have been used to build roads, hospitals, provide medical supplies, equip schools and develop the country in other ways.