Detectives from the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) have arrested an assistant chief in Meru County for allegedly demanding a Sh300 bribe to favourably arbitrate a dispute between two neighbours.
The officers from Upper Eastern region, pounced on Mbeu Assistant Chief Joshua Karithi as he allegedly received the amount from a Mr Edward Mutie who is having a dispute with a neighbour.
Regional EACC boss George Ojowi said the matter had been postponed for over a year since Mr Mutie was being asked to pay Sh3,000 which he could not afford.
The assistant chief finally allegedly agreed to take Sh300 and sent an elder to collect it for him, unaware that EACC was on his radar.
The complainant claimed that the administrator had asked for Sh600 from him to help resolve the dispute with a neighbour but he negotiated downwards to Sh300, which he was given by EACC.
It was then that the administrator was arrested in his office as he received the treated money while being recorded.
“He was arrested alongside Mr Isiah Miriti and Mr Peter Mugambi and [we] recovered treated money from the suspect’s pockets. EACC has confirmed that the video and audio recordings in their possession show how the officers demanded for the bribe and later on each taking his share of the treated money,” said Mr Ojowi.
The officials also recovered Sh4,250 which the administrator had but there was no evidence that it was a proceed of graft.
The anti-graft boss said residents had complained that the administrator refused to hear disputes unless he is bribed.
“Failure to pay the non-receipted amount then their cases were not being heard by the local administrator who had formed a special committee to receive the bribes, comprising a chairman and secretary,” said Mr Ojowi.
The suspects were taken to Meru Police Station where their fingerprints were taken and later released on police bond pending the conclusion of investigations.