EACC wants law changed to block State officers' double pay

Tuesday February 05 2019

EACC Deputy CEO Michael Mubea before Senate Public Accounts Committee on May 25, 2017. PHOTO | DENNIS ONSONGO | NATION MEDIA GROUP


The Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) has proposed an amendment to the law to ensure State officers do not engage in other gainful employment.

The EACC says there is a lacuna in the law as it does not draw a clear distinction between a State and a public officer.

Speaking at the start of a five-day workshop in Machakos on Tuesday, Deputy chief executive Michael Mubea said the participants will come up with a draft which will be forwarded to parliament for deliberation.


Mr Mubea said the commission, tasked with enforcing the Leadership and Integrity Act, has encountered difficulties in enforcing some sections of Chapter Six of the Constitution.

He cited the case of a county officer working in two counties and earning two salaries.


Such cases raise the issue of personal and professional ethics, the EACC boss said, adding members of parliament are union officials so they also earn two salaries.

"They invoke Section 26 [and present a] challenge. We are discussing amendments that we can pass through parliament," he said at the meeting of EACC officers, judges and officials from the Public Service Commission and the office of the Attorney-General


Justice Hedwig Ongudi, of the Anti-Corruption Court, gave a presentation titled 'Emerging Jurisprudence on the Employment Act'.

Ms Ongudi pointed out that a full-time State officer shall not participate in any other gainful employment, according to Article 77.

"This is about ethics. What ethics do we have as public officers or even as individuals? Your conscience should tell you that what you are doing is wrong."

Article 77, according to the definition provided in Article 260A, says a State officer is a person holding a State office.

The Constitution is however silent on the distinction between State officers serving full-time and those serving part-time.

Justice Ongudi said the law should be amended to eradicate avenues for moonlighting and help prevent wastage of resources.

"Kenya is a rich country. If we put Chapter Six into use, I am sure we will be in a better place," she said.