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Five commissioners ask anti-graft boss to quit over NYS saga

The problems bedeviling Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) chairman Philip Kinisu have deepened after his fellow commissioners asked him to step aside to allow independent investigations.

Mr Kinisu has been facing calls to resign after revelations that Esaki Limited, a company owned by Mr Kinisu’s wife, has been conducting business with the National Youth Service where it was allegedly paid for goods that were overpriced or not supplied.

He has denied the allegations.

But five EACC commissioners have now issued a statement calling on Mr Kinisu to step aside saying by virtue of his office and his relationship with Esaki Limited, his personal interests are in conflict with those of the public in respect of the subject investigations.

EACC has been investigating the NYS scandal where hundreds of millions were lost in shady deals.

“In line with the requirement of Chapter Six of the constitution, leadership and integrity Act and the EACC Code of Conduct, the commission wishes to reiterate the need to enforce compliance with the said laws,” said the commissioners.

ETHICAL STANDARDS

“Holders of the public office are required to observe high ethical standards and therefore the view of the commissioners is that the continued occupation of the office of the chairperson of the commission is in apparent or potential conflict with public interest whether real or perceived.”

The five are Sophia Lepuchirit (vice chairperson), Dr Dabar Abdi Maalim, Paul Mwaniki Gachoka, Rose Mghoi Macharia and Halakhe Waqo (secretary).

EACC also says it has written to the Attorney General Prof Githu Muigai seeking his legal opinion on the matter, “more particularly considering that the view of the commissioners is that the chairperson should take personal responsibility.”

The five argue that conflict of interest is occasioned by the fact that the EACC chairperson is tasked with the responsibility of providing policy direction on all matters for the commission including investigations into corruption, economic crimes and unethical conduct.

He is also involved in considering files where investigations are concluded and is a joint signatory to files forwarded to the DPP for review and further action and that Mr Kinisu was well aware that the commission was actively investigating the NYS matter.