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Jubilee nomination aspirants face disqualification for corruption

Nairobi governor aspirant Peter Kenneth (second right) during a luncheon organised in his honour by Muslim leaders. [PHOTO: JENIPHER WACHIE/STANDARD]

Reports that aspirants will need a clearance certificate from the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission before they can participate in Jubilee Party nominations are generating anxiety.

President Uhuru Kenyatta is understood to have issued firm instructions that aspirants who did not pass the test of leadership and integrity as outlined in Chapter Six of the Constitution should not be allowed to contest in Jubilee primaries.

The directive to the party’s secretariat means that politicians with pending corruption cases will have their nomination applications rejected.

EACC’s Ethics department is processing the applications for clearance by focusing mainly on morality, ethical concerns, corruption-related issues and complaints from other people or bodies.

The majority of ongoing cases or investigations into corruption were prompted by a report from the EACC that Uhuru submitted to Parliament in March 2015.

EACC is also probing a number of governors for alleged financial improprieties.

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Last month, the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) tabled in Parliament new electoral rules that require all political aspirants to be cleared by EACC before vying for any seat.

In the past, aspirants were only required to fill arbitrary self-declaration forms as proof of their integrity.

Sources in the JP secretariat and close confidants of Uhuru told The Standard that the President was determined to ensure that those running on the party ticket did not carry ‘excess baggage’.

All applicants are also required to clear with the Kenya Revenue Authority for tax compliance and Credit Reference Bureau for loan repayments as well as the Higher Education Loans Board for repayment of university loans by beneficiaries.

JP chairman David Murathe confirmed that politicians who failed to comply with Chapter Six of the Constitution would not be spared.

Sources within Jubilee also indicated to The Standard that EACC was also probing the academic credentials of Kabete MP Ferdinand Waititu, who survived a similar probe in 2013, when IEBC cleared him to contest in the elections.

“President Uhuru Kenyatta has issued firm instructions not to issue Jubilee tickets to anyone without EACC clearance,” said a close ally of Uhuru.

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Applications by former Mungiki leader Maina Njenga and Isiolo Governor Godana Doyo were rejected last week. Efforts to get comments from Mr Doyo failed as he did not respond to phone calls or text messages.

“The President personally ordered the rejection of Maina Njenga’s application. He was tough in his instructions and ruled out any exceptions,” revealed the source.

Another source said former Devolution Cabinet Secretary Anne Waiguru was scheduled to present her papers on Friday but did not show up.

ROUGH TIME

Governors Martin Wambora (Embu) and Mwangi wa Iria (Murang’a), who have had a rough time with EACC investigators, are also yet to present their papers for clearance by the secretariat.

But JP Secretary General Veronica Maina denied that any applications had been rejected. Instead, she said those who had failed to comply with certain requirements had been directed to do so.

“We have been offering an advisory to the applicants. It is the elections board that will scrutinise the documents and give its verdict. We are only helping our aspiring members to comply with IEBC requirements ahead of time,” said Ms Maina.

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EACC Chief Executive Officer Halakhe Wako said the commission met with IEBC to come up with clearance modalities.

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