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Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Licence to Steal?

The NARC government's war on corruption once again looks like a whitewash. Just a day before the KACC urged the prosecution of 12 suspects, Justice and Constitutional Affairs Minister Martha Karua offered a deal to all those implicated: return the money and face no consequences. She says that this is to promote national reconciliation.

Why, I ask, do we need to be reconciled with criminals? Is this not the same argument that Kiraitu Murungi employed when he declared Anglo-Leasing "the scandal that never was" since the cash had been returned? In fact, Karua's offer underscores the unwillingness of the government to make any meaningful attempt to punish those who have systematically pillaged and plundered Kenya's economy.

Most have gotten away scot-free (such as former president Moi, his cronies and his family, especially his son Gideon -remember the missing CID files?) and the few who have been nabbed have been treated with kid gloves. Just look at what happened to Ketan Somaia, Khamlesh Pattni and Margaret Gachara. A short time behind bars (most of which was spent in hospital private wards), no confiscation of assets and in Gachara's case, a Presidential pardon. Where is the deterrent value in that? I would gladly spend two years in prison if it meant that I could keep Kshs. 24 million. No wonder corruption continues unabated!

5 comments:

coldtusker said...

You are on the mark... How many Kenyans would not mind a 1-year jail term for KES 24 Million!

Heck, I would seriously consider it...

Jon said...

I thought it was 2 years for Kshs 24m (Kshs 1m/month)? 1 year for Kshs 2m/month sounds even better ... i'd consider it!!!

kenyananalyst said...

Thanks for visiting with me.

Gathara said...

Actually, Mrs Gachara served less than 5 months of her 3-year sentence for stealing (or in the favoured euphemism, fraudulently obtaining) KSh27 million from the government before being pardoned by President Kibaki. Ketan Somaia was sentenced to two years for stealing KSh112 million from the National Bank of Kenya but was released on appeal 9 months later.

coldtusker said...

So... the amount per month is much higher than we thought...

Where do I sign up?