JIENJOY

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Leaders urged to axe tainted officials

NAIROBI, Kenya, Aug 17 - Narc Kenya now wants President Mwai Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga to ensure that all public officials who will be sworn-in after the promulgation of the new Constitution have integrity.

Chairperson Martha Karua on Tuesday asked the two principals to ensure that all state officials suspected of criminal acts do not resume public offices.

She argued that retaining corrupt individuals would be an abuse of the provisions of the new law and would further promote the culture of impunity that the country was attempting to eliminate.

“Only those leaders who pass the test of integrity should participate in this process because if we allow corrupt individuals to continue heading public offices we will see attempts of subverting the new Constitution,” she said.

Ms Karua further argued that all the provisions in the new Constitution ought to be equally respected by all Kenyans.

“It is time we started respecting the provisions of our laws and the new Constitution should be our starting point; chapter six of the new Constitution (Leadership and Integrity) must therefore be honoured. These laws do not just govern the common mwananchi. There are so many Kenyans of integrity who can take up some of these public offices,” she said.

The Narc-Kenya chairperson further asked Internal Security Minister George Saitoti and Police Commissioner Matthew Iteere to ensure that the country’s police officers were re-educated on the importance of respecting human rights.

She accused the police of constantly abusing human rights adding that it was time they were held to account for any acts of violation they committed.

“Over the weekend they (police) threw teargas canisters at octogenarian women who were demonstrating against a cooperative scheme that had misappropriated their money. And it doesn’t matter whether what they were doing was right or not but they have a right to assemble,” she said.

Ms Karua also asked Kenyans to be aware of their rights so as to stop further abuse, “No one should allow their rights to be violated and people should know where to seek redress.”

Narc Kenya Secretary General Danson Mungatana also reiterated that the Cabinet should not include those suspected of criminal acts. He asked the President and Prime Minister to immediately trim the Cabinet from the current 42 ministers and over 50 assistants to a leaner 22-member Cabinet.

The political party also commended Kenyans and the Interim Independent Electoral Commission for conducting a peaceful referendum process.

Kenya will on August 27 usher in the new Constitution at a ceremony that will be officiated by the President. The national event which will be held at the Uhuru Park grounds will be marked with pomp and color and will see several African heads of state and other global dignitaries among the invited guests.

Representatives from all provinces in the country are also expected to travel to Nairobi to witness the country’s historical moment.

The Uhuru Park grounds are currently being spruced up for the event.

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