Stop stealing from public to fund polls

Sunday March 24 2019


Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission chief executive officer Twalib Mbarak (left) and Director of Criminal Investigations George Kinoti take a pensive mood during an anti-corruption session with senators at Parliament, on March 13, 2019. A section of leaders say the anti-graft war is biased. PHOTO | DIANA NGILA | NATION MEDIA GROUP  

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There was a captivating headline on the front page of one of the dailies on Tuesday last week. It read: ‘I will take some big fish to Kamiti, says Kinoti'.

It was referring to the reaction of Director of Criminal Investigations George Kinoti to accusations that have been directed at him by some politicians regarding the ongoing investigations into billions of shillings lost in the dams saga.

I am almost sure that those exact words were not exactly Mr Kinoti’s. The media must attract their readers and so they craft headlines that capture the imagination of such an audience.

‘Take big fish to Kamiti...’ Isn’t that what the whole idea is? Mr Kinoti did not say exactly that, but that is what most Kenyans would want to see. We have been through this for far too long.


The attack on Mr Kinoti was meant to scare him because there are people who believe that they have to steal to fund their political activities.

As a matter of fact, I have argued for several years in this column that we as a society have an endemic problem.

This problem is about a generation of people who grew up in a political period when being in government meant illegal access to resources.

That generation I am talking about perceives government as a cake that must be eaten immediately. It is a problem that Mr Kinoti, Director of Public Prosecution Noordin Haji and judges of goodwill have to deal with.

If Kenya has to move forward, there will be need for some very “big fish” to be jailed sooner than later.


Of course I do realise that corruption has the ability — and the reason — to fight back. As we all Kenyans have learnt, that fighting back can take any form.

What matters however is that something drastic has to happen and be seen to happen. Too much talk about a corrupt society where nothing is being done does not give hope to anyone.

I do not know about those dams that everyone is talking about, but I do remember that a while back there was talk about a certain “Turkwel Dam”.

No one, even those in government, is talking about it. Could the current discourse be about the same kind of scam? The Turkwel saga is even better because there is something to show for it.

For if police are to be believed, all money for the current dams is gone. Mr Kinoti and Mr Haji must do the necessary.

Fr Wamugunda is the dean of students and sociology lecturer at the University of Nairobi. [email protected]