FOUR GOVERNANCE AND ACCOUNTABILITY ORGANISATIONS WARN CORRUPT ASPIRANTS NOT TO VIE FOR ELECTED OFFICE

PRESS STATEMENT

TUESDAY APRIL 11 2016

FOUR GOVERNANCE AND ACCOUNTABILITY ORGANISATIONS WARN CORRUPT ASPIRANTS NOT TO VIE FOR ELECTED OFFICE

As Kenya’s 69 political parties embark on party primary elections, the National Integrity Alliance declares our collective determination to prevent corrupt aspirants from being elected into public office contrary to the spirit and letter of Chapter Six of the Constitution.

Every year, critical constitutional and independent Offices including the Commission on Administrative Justice, the Ethics & Anti-Corruption Commission, the Office of the Auditor General and the Controller of Budget have demonstrated unconstitutionality, impunity and corruption in the wasteful use of public resources at both levels of Government.

Regrettably, many of those named, investigated, facing prosecution or already convicted have declared their interest to run for public office in the August 2017 elections. Unless direct action is taken by both citizens and frontline institutions to interrupt this trend, the 2017 General Election is about to transform the seeds of corruption into trunks of impunity.

Deep corruption and diminished accountability by duty bearers affects Kenyans lives singularly and collectively. Left unchecked, this trend damages national cohesion, undermines government’s capacity to provide essential services, leads to a rise in the cost of living and places the prices of essential goods out of reach of most Kenyans. In the absence of decisive, deterrence-based punitive action by the State and relevant institutions, abuse of office and theft of public resources has become the new normal.

To disrupt this real and present danger to the nation, we call on Kenyans to launch a 90-day campaign to #RedCard all corrupt and unethical aspirants, raise voter awareness and empower frontline institutions to hold the promise of Chapter 6 before all candidates.

We call upon political parties to ensure nomination of high calibre individuals. Party Election Boards should not clear aspirants who have been adversely mentioned in the reports of Office of the Auditor General and other constitutional commissions and independent offices, National Assembly, Senate, County Assemblies, the 2015 Presidential State of the Nation Address or who have unresolved cases before the courts.

Over the next 30 days we shall be meeting with the political parties to remind them of their obligation to uphold Chapter 6. The National Integrity Alliance places all political parties on notice that should they fail to follow the constitution and laws setting out ethical standards for State and Public Officers, we will actively and publicly de-campaign their candidates. We will further proceed to institute legal petitions for the removal of those who may win elections.

The cost of electing leaders with questionable integrity is borne by citizens through broken promises to provide effective public services, ensure a life of dignity and democratic governance after elections.

Citizens must actively participate in the party primaries. We must all rise above ethnic, regional, religious and gender bias and only elect leaders who meet the ethical threshold required to hold public office.

We call on citizens to flash red cards at any corrupt and unethical aspirants in their rallies and political activities. We must socially audit and expose all lifestyles that suggest unethical behaviour. We must hold all current and aspiring leaders accountable to Chapter 6.

We further call on vetting institutions to remain objective, pro-active and uphold the right of the public to relevant information to enable voters to make informed choices at the ballot. We shall complement this effort by raising awareness of the importance of ethical choices.

We are currently seeking the legal interpretation on the minimum integrity threshold of candidates seeking elective and appointive positions in the public service.

Lastly, we extend our hands of cooperation and partnership to all who seek to place Chapter 6 at the heart of our democracy. We commit to work with political parties, vetting and other relevant institutions to sensitize citizens on the minimum integrity threshold for future leaders. We must ensure that Kenyans elect leaders that meet the leadership reflect the 2010 Constitution. The future of our country depends on this.

One comment

  • Veronica

    Bold move but urgently needed. It’s high time something was done about impunity in Kenya and this time I hope the IEBC will live up to their name and bar those mentioned from running.

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