Saturday, 12 December 2015

CORRUPTION: NEP Governors owe NEP people a list of corrupt officials.

March this year, while delivering his State of the Nation Address, President Uhuru declared war on corruption. In doing so, the President tabled a list of senior government officials - including cabinet secretaries - suspected of corruption before Parliament.

Recently the President, while reshuffling his cabinet, declared corruption a threat to national security, dropped all the cabinet secretaries mentioned in his March speech and released a raft of the most comprehensive anti-corruption measures in history. The President restated his firm commitment to step up the war against graft in his Jamhuri Day address.

With devolution came governors. A sort of mini-presidents - after all the constitution talks of two levels of government. North Eastern heartily welcomed devolution, for the people of the restive North - who have known no real development, literally - always believed that they were marginalised because of unfavorable centralized national decision-making system. They hoped devolution will be a quick fix to marginalisation which was blamed for the underdevelopment in the expansive region.

Instead of delivering on local priorities long neglected by successive regimes, the region's governors are wantonly blowing money and spending incredible amounts on things that do not benefit the citizens who elected them. Corruption has 'officially' been devolved since reports emerging from these counties suggest that the county leadership has expanded the eating table and spread the loot around. As a result, we have counties where all is in harmony. Where no dissenting voice or challenges to county expenditure or budget is heard because they are all in it together.

In a rare move, NEP residents petitioned the Senate. In the petitions presented separately before the Senate Finance committee, the three governors have been accused of allocating projects in a skewed manner, institutionalized corruption, nepotism and plunder of public resources.

NEP Governors ought to deliver the great expectations with which devolution was received in North Eastern and not dash the legitimate hopes and inspirations of the people.

Therefore the governors of Garissa, Wajir and Mandera owe the people of NEP a comprehensive explanation for what has been happening on their watch.
Above all, they owe us all a long list of shame.

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