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Senior Kiambu County official nabbed over Sh40,000 bribe

A senior Kiambu County official who was asking for a Sh40,000 bribe or she revokes a business license was on Thursday, July 14, 2023, arrested and later released on bond.

Ms Mercy Wambui the head of Liquor Licensing in Githunguri Sub-County was nabbed by officials attached to the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC)

“Investigations carried out by EACC reveal that she impounded goods belonging to the complainant, a bar business operator within Kiambu County and she demanded for a Sh40,000 bribe in order to return the same,” a statement by EACC read in part.

Ms Wambui further threatened to revoke the complainant’s license and stop her from operating the bar business if the demand would not be given.

EACC said that it was also investigating similar cases which have been on the rise within Kiambu County.

“The Commission is in receipt of numerous complaints of this nature regarding liquor licensing officials within Kiambu County.

Ms Wambui led a team of Kiambu County Enforcement Officers to the bar and found employees busy undertaking stock-taking for the day.

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The team then accused the employees of opening and operating a bar before the stipulated time. They then confiscated the complainant’s goods, which they carried with them.

“The complainant did a follow-up with the officials at their office whereby the suspect demanded a bribe of Sh40,000 in order to absolve the complainant of the alleged offense and return the impounded goods,” the statement further read.

On July 4, 2023, the complainant made another follow-up on the matter but was not assisted. Instead, the officer allegedly threatened her and demanded a bribe.

The matter was then reported to the EACC, on July 11, 2023, which investigated and verified the bribe demand.

“The suspect was arrested the following day while receiving the bribe from the complainant. She was escorted to Integrity Centre Police Station where she was processed and later released on Sh40,000 police bail pending court appearance,” EACC said.

In the recent past, following orders from Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua on crackdowns targeting liquor stores, the country has seen an upsurge in cases where county officials have been arrested demanding bribes.

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