EACC freezes officials’ accounts to probe loss of Sh400 million

Homa Bay County Assembly Clerk Bob Kephers during a past session of the House. [James Omoro, Standard]

 

Homa Bay County Assembly Clerk Bob Kephers during a past session of the House. [James Omoro, Standard]

The anti-corruption agency has frozen bank accounts of a senior Homa Bay county assembly official and his wife to pave way for investigations into the alleged loss of more than Sh400 million.

This followed a court ruling that allowed the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) to freeze accounts of Assembly Clerk Bob Kephers and his wife, Everlyn Ogutu, and barred their agents from accessing the accounts.

Made ruling

Homa Bay Resident Judge Hellen Omondi had last week made the ruling to allow the EACC to continue with investigations into the matter.

“The EACC argued that the two acquired a huge amount of wealth whose origin is not known,” ruled Justice Omondi.

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In an affidavit sworn by EACC investigator Ahmed Osman, it was discovered that Kephers and his wife received huge amounts of funds in “suspect deal”.

“The funds transfer in their accounts raise suspicion because there were no services rendered to demand payment from the county assembly or the county government,” read the ruling.

An EACC official told The Standard that they had moved swiftly to freeze the accounts, and had also taken control of property worth Sh200 million belonging to officials of the county assembly.

“The property is suspected to have been acquired though corrupt practices carried out by senior top officials of the House.”

The property include houses and money in the bank.

The assets are said to be in Homa Bay, Kisumu and Nairobi counties.

They include homes and business premises and bank accounts belonging to the suspects.

Criminal charges

The properties were allegedly purchased by funds whose sources have been traced to the assembly.

Earlier, Mr Kephers sought a court order by filing an application under certificate of urgency, requesting the court to stop the commission from proceeding with the investigations, as well as prohibiting the Director of Public Prosecutions from preferring criminal charges against assembly officials.

Mr Kephers argued that the House is a privileged establishment and cannot be investigated for any form of criminal acts. 

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