Written by Joseph Amunya Otieno
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The government has been asked to arrest and arraign in court embezzlers of public funds regardless of their position in society in order to restore Kenyans confidence in her commitment toward fighting graft.
This call was made by Minister for Planning and National Development Mr. Wycliffe Ambetsa Oparanya during his tour of Western Province over the weekend.
Addressing teachers during a fundraiser in aid of the construction of Kenya National Union of Teachers (KNUT) Lugari district offices at Lumakanda Township primary school, Oparanya said that sacking those involved in scandals involving public money was not enough, saying that the law demands that such culprits should be made accountable for their mistakes.
The minister was referring to the latest scandals that have hit government involving disappearance of about 200 million shillings from the ministry of youth’s development fund kitty and the National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF) saga where reports in the public domain indicate that close to Sh7 million have been misappropriated.
He warned the electorate had lost confidence in the government’s efforts to fight corruption because of a few politicians who were misusing leadership positions bestowed on them to swindle money from public coffers in readiness for the forthcoming General Elections campaigns.
“It is sad to see wananchi lose confidence in this government with the gains made in the last four years due to unscrupulous individuals,” cried Oparanya.
Oparanya urged the newly appointed Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission led by lawyer Mumo Matemu to move in quickly and curb the escalating graft, especially now that country is heading towards electioneering period.
Oparanya, who has declared his interest in Kakamega County governor seat, appealed to the Kenyan electorate to evaluate track records for all politicians seeking elective posts at all levels before voting for any of them.
“Chapter Six of our new constitution is very clear on leadership and integrity. I urge all Kenyans to read and understand it. It is only then that we can have good leaders who will steer this country’s development agenda ahead,” said Oparanya.
Having led the planning ministry to twice clinch the first position under the ministerial performance scorecard in the last four years, Oparanya appealed to the electorate in Kakamega County to its weight behind for the county’s governorship seat, saying that he was the most suitable candidate.
Others who have declared their interests in the Kakamega County governorship include Housing Minister Mr. Soita Shitanda and a former Provincial Commissioner Mr. Paul Olando.
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