By Julius Musungu
Orange Democratic Leader Raila Odinga has issued a statement denouncing any acts of corruption from its officials implicated in the COVID 19 corruption allegations saying that those found culpable will carry their own cross.
The statement sent from the Orange Center, the ODM bigwig said that ODM has a history of fighting corruption and it will not allow any of its members to engage in the vice.
“ODM has always advocated this systematic approach to fighting corruption. In the Grand Coalition Government, the party successfully pushed for the systematic audit of the sale of Grand Regency Hotel and attendant consequences. ODM pushed for the systematic audit of Anglo Leasing Scandal by Kroll and Associates, leading to appropriate legal action on culprits. When the Maize Scandal erupted, ODM pushed for the appointment of PricewaterhouseCoopers to audit the matter, leading to appropriate action against culprits. A special audit also led to convictions in the Ksh 283 million Nairobi cemetery scam.”The statement reads.
The Party however called for thorough investigations into the allegation of the funds and audit of the money put at the disposal of the agencies.
“The position of the party in the current allegations of corruption in COVID-19 related resources is that the government needs to conduct a thorough and urgent audit of all the funds that have been put at the disposal of various state agencies, departments and ministries to fight the pandemic with a view to establishing the facts on the usage of such resources,” Raila said.
Raila said that the systematic approach has worked well in other cases in Kenya before such as Arror and Kimwarrer dams scandal the truth was established when the Auditor-General conducted a special audit of the Sh60 billion dams whose procurement and financing had caused public outrage.
Raila added that a similar approach worked with regard to the National Youth Service scam wherein 2016, the office of the Auditor General was able to establish that Kenyan taxpayers lost Ksh1.9 billion in the scandal and proceeded to identify the principal beneficiaries of the theft. On the basis of that audit, suspects were arraigned in court.
Raila however is calling for a thorough audit and said that there is no evidence linking the officials to the graft but cast doubt on those calling out ODM on social media.
“As matters stand now, none of the people taking to the podium or social media to condemn theft of funds has any evidence. The so-called condemnations of theft could well be part of a cover-up.
Our experience in this country is that the best way to bungle and cover up corruption investigations is to have many different voices each with its own version of the truth. We saw that noise with regard to Arror and Kimwarer dams and the NYS scams, among others” Raila said.