Monday, September 19, 2011

Kibaki set to name new anti-graft team

President Kibaki
President Kibaki. Photo/FILE 
Posted  Sunday, September 18  2011 at  22:30

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President Kibaki is on Monday expected to name a nine-member panel that will select the commissioners for the agency to take over anti-corruption watchdog’s work.
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According to the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission Act published on September 5, the deadline for constituting the panel is on Monday.
Says Article 6 of the Act: “The President shall, within 14 days after the commencement of this Act, constitute a selection panel…”
Kenya Anti-Corruption Commission (Kacc), which was disbanded following the passage of the Act, is yet to conclude investigations and make recommendations on at least 11 major cases, among them the Water Ministry scandal. (READ: KACC is crippled as its bosses quit office)
President Kibaki arrived in New York on Saturday evening to attend the 66th session of the United Nations General Assembly.
It is not clear whether he will make the appointments from New York or how long he will be there.
The challenge of not having an anti-corruption agency in place has forced Justice Minister Mutula Kilonzo to convene a crisis meeting of Kacc top officials for a meeting on Monday.
The commission is now being run by an Advisory Board, which has a 90-day period to be in office, with principal officer in charge of administration and finance Jane Muthaura acting as director.
The panel will comprise one person each from the Office of the President, Office of the Prime Minister, the Justice Ministry, the Judicial Service Commission and Kenya National Commission on Human Rights.
Other institutions are the Gender Commission, Media Council, the joint forum of religious organisations and the Association of Professional Societies of East Africa.
Like the panel selecting the members of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission, the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission panel will be hosted by the Public Service Commission.
The panel is expected to invite applications for three positions — one chairperson and two commissioners — within seven days of their first sitting.
The invitations should be by way of advertisement in at least two daily newspapers with national circulation, says the Act.
It shall then shortlist the applicants, publish the names in the newspapers, conduct interviews in public and eventually shortlist three persons for the position of chairperson.
The panel shall also shortlist four applicants for the positions of members and forward the names to the President.
President Kibaki will then select the chairperson and members of the commission within 14 days and forward their names to the National Assembly for vetting and approval.
There has been confusion after a court issued orders last Thursday barring the ejection of former anti-corruption commission director PLO Lumumba from office.

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