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Economy

Uhuru promises to resolve economic crimes faster...if re-elected

President Uhuru Kenyatta and Deputy President William Ruto (right) during the launch of the National Government Public Information Portal www.delivery.go.ke at KICC, Nairobi on April 10, 2017. PHOTO | PSCU
President Uhuru Kenyatta and Deputy President William Ruto (right) during the launch of the National Government Public Information Portal www.delivery.go.ke at KICC, Nairobi on April 10, 2017. PHOTO | PSCU 

President Uhuru Kenyatta is promising to save Sh1 trillion in five years by reducing wastage in public service, and resolving corruption cases in six months, if re-elected.

The Head of State has also promised to create a new agency - the General Services Agency - that it says will procure “all supplies and services, communications, transportation and office space.”

To counter claims that shadowy contractors are winning government tenders, the Jubilee government has promised to publish annual details of all the procurement awards for major government projects, while promising to establish “an enhanced protection and reward framework for whistle-blowers.”

“In five years, we promise to increase the penalty to include jail time for economic crimes and work with the judiciary to ensure all economic crime cases are resolved within 6 months,” President Kenyatta says in the Jubilee manifesto launched Monday evening.

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'Not done enough'

His Jubilee administration has been accused by critics as having not done enough to fight corruption, claims he has severally denied arguing that he had given his all and was only being failed by the Judiciary, investigating agencies, and what he said was a back-and-forth blame game.

“We will develop the Huduma network, expand the automation of public service delivery systems, digitise payments for all public services and enhance use of technology in law enforcement,” the Jubilee Party said in its manifesto.

For the past five years, President Kenyatta’s main challenger Raila Odinga has accused the Jubilee government of corruption.

He has questioned, among other things, the handling of the Sh1.6 billion National Youth Service (NYS) scandal, the use and details of the Sh250 billion Eurobond proceeds that he argues were misused, claims the government has termed as “the biggest lie ever told.”

President Kenyatta has defended the government over the Eurobond saga.

“We are saying that the government of Kenya and the government of the United States through the Federal Reserve Bank colluded to steal money? Ngai! (God!),” President Kenyatta remarked at State House last year.

In the five years in power, Jubilee said, it had constituted a multi-agency anti-corruption team that had led to the 360 cases now being before the courts.

“We have recovered or reserved for recovery over Sh3 billion of proceeds of economic crimes, the highest amount ever in the fight against corruption in Kenya,” the party said in its manifesto.

Similarly, the party said, it had pumped in money for transforming and training Judiciary workers on how to handle corruption cases, and had helped create legal aid scheme, a transformative piece of legislation it says will improve access to justice.

Under the National Legal Aid Service Board, legal services will be provided for free to litigants who cannot afford lawyers.

“Our vision is a Kenya committed to a fair, just, secure and orderly management of public affairs in a society that upholds the rule of law.

"Every Kenyan must feel confident that the legal and justice systems will support and protect them equally before the law," the party said.

It went on: “We will investigate, prosecute and punish perpetrators of corruption at all levels of society using the full force of the law."

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