Wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka has accused some governors of engaging in corruption and called for a life style audit on both national and county leaders to stem the vice.
The National Super Alliance (Nasa) co-principal said it was worrying that “massive” corruption had infiltrated counties and it was important that leaders perpetrating the vice be rooted out.
While devolution was a success story four years later, Mr Musyoka said corrupt governors and their juniors had failed Kenyans and made “a mockery of the devolution dream.”
“Massive corruption has crept up in devolved units where funds are either out rightly embezzled, or costs for goods and services are inflated to astronomical amounts by corrupt officials in collusion with rogue contractors,” Mr Musyoka said at the fourth devolution conference at the Kenya Wildlife Service Institute.
He was emphatic that Nasa would not tolerate leaders, including governors mentioned in corruption scandals, and will require that they step down from their positions and be investigated.
“Nasa makes it very clear. It will not be business as usual. Any public officer named in corrupt deals will be forced to step down. This, we believe, is the only way to slay the dragon of corruption,” he said.
He questioned the ability of the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC), Judiciary and the Directorate of Public Prosecution to deal with corruption arguing that some of the institution had been compromised and lacked independence.
“While EACC would be the best arbiter, quite a number of Kenyans believe that the commission is too close to the ruling Jubilee for comfort, hence can be used to settle scores on those who have fallen out with the ruling regime,” Mr Musyoka claimed.
He pledged Nasa’s commitment to give the institutions “total independence so that they perform their duties without fear or favour.”
At the same time, the Wiper leader accused Jubilee of being a hindrance to devolution by underfunding the devolved units.
He said the 15 per cent allocation of audited revenue was not enough to run county governments.
Responding to Mr Musyoka’s remarks on corruption in the counties, Council of Governors chairman Peter Munya said it is unfair to brand county bosses as corrupt.
The Meru governor said a negative perception had been created that governors are corrupt yet no action or arrests have been made.
He challenged the institutions charged with dealing with corruption to take action against whoever they believe is involved.
“There is an impression that has been created that all governors are corrupt which is not acceptable and neither is it fair,” said Mr Munya.