Governors, MPs have 30 days to declare wealth
Newly-elected Governors and Members of Parliament have 30 days to declare their wealth to the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC).
The integrity body said in a statement on Tuesday, that the declaration of wealth is an integral component of the agency’s efforts to combat corruption.
Last week, EACC boss Twalib Mba said the newly-elected leaders will be expected to sign and commit to Integrity Codes before taking office. EACC said the documents shall be signed in the presence of Judicial Officers and EACC officials who will be present in all swearing-in ceremonies to witness.
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“As part of preventing corruption in the incoming governments, all governors and their deputies taking the oath of office today will at the same time sign and commit to Integrity Codes in the presence of Judicial Officers,” said the EACC boss.
According to Twalib, the signing of the Integrity Code signifies a commitment and pledge by the state officers that as they discharge their duties to the public, they will uphold the integrity and not betray public trust in any way. The Code is under Part II of the Leadership and Integrity Act, 2012.
Similarly, Sections 26 and 27 of the Public Officer Ethics Act, 2003 require all public officials to declare their wealth within 30 days of assuming office.
EACC warned that a person who fails to submit a declaration or clarification required, or makes a false declaration is guilty of an offense and is liable, on conviction, to a fine not exceeding Sh1 million or up to one-year imprisonment or both.
This comes barely a day after the commission filed a suit at the High Court over alleged embezzlement of funds by Homa Bay County Assembly officials amounting to Sh36 million in collusion with a private contractor. The amount was paid by the County Assembly of Homa Bay to Hartland Enterprises Limited, a private contractor, for work not done.
The anti-corruption body further alleged that the funds were embezzled by the Assembly Clerk/Accounting Officer, Project Quantity Surveyor, Ministry of Housing and Public Works and Directors of Hartland Enterprises Limited. The commission said it has since received orders to freeze Sh13.5 million.
The agency has recently arrested county and national government leaders who have accumulated unexplainable amounts of money while in office. In one incident, a City Hall officer was recently detained by EACC for having property valued at Sh40 million despite having a cumulative salary of Sh21,000.
The oath of office for elected lawmakers has not been taken with the swearing-in date yet to be revealed. The members of the 13th Parliament had an orientation last week.