Kenya’s Corruption Fight Backfires as Security Gaps Exposed
Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta. Photographer: Daniel Hayduk/AFP via Getty Images
Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta’s push to fight corruption, which forced five ministers to leave their posts pending a probe, may be backfiring.
Less than a month after he ordered the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission to investigate 170 officials for fraud, Kenyatta suspended the chairman of the agency and his deputy on April 23 2015 on allegations of misconduct. The two officials resigned before testifying at a tribunal.
Instead of instilling confidence that Kenya is serious about tackling widespread bribery and fraud, Kenyatta’s actions have given his critics more ammunition to fault the government in the face of rising attacks by militants from neighboring Somalia. The main opposition, led by former Prime Minister Raila Odinga, has called Kenyatta’s graft probe a whitewash that serves to protect his allies while avoiding the bribery of security officials that may be enabling the attackers.