Written by David Indeje
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Parliament on Thursday approved the nomination of Mumo Matemu as chairman of the Ethics and Anti Corruption Commission, and Jane Kerubo Onsongo and Irene Cheptoo Keino as its members.
Matemu becomes the third head of the agency in two years after two former directors; Mr Aaron Ringera and Prof Patrick Lumumba were kicked out by Parliament.
Mr Ringera was rejected in 2009 after President Kibaki unilaterally reappointed him for the second term. His two deputies, Dr Smokin Wanjala (now a judge in the Supreme Court) and Ms Fatuma Sichale, also left office.
In moving the motion, the Justice minister Eugene Wamalwa said that the fight against graft in the country will not be possible unless the process of forming the commission is expedited.
Cabinet ministers, Lands minister James Orengo, Energy minister Kiraitu Muruingi, and Immigration minister Otieno Kajwang among other legislators Aden Duale (Dujis), David Koech (Mosop) Jakoyo Midiwo (Gem) supported the motion with proposals for the committee to start working.
However, Peter Njoroge Baiya the Githunguri was not in support of the motion to approve the names noting that, there was need to know if they demonstrated in their past careers whether they were illustrious to effectively work in the commission.
Early, this month during a cabinet meeting, the Executive agreed to support the urgent reconstruction of the anti-corruption commission as stipulated in the Constitution. It said:
“In this regard the Cabinet resolved that the government will table before Parliament a Motion seeking approval of the confirmation of the three as commissioners of the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission.”
However, last year, the Justice and Legal Affairs Committee tabled a report in the House asking MPs to reject Mumo Matemu’s nomination as the EACC Chair, alongside Jane Onsongo and Irene Keino on grounds that “they lacked passion” to lead the war on graft.
Mumo Matemu a former commissioner with the Kenya Revenue Authority, Prof Jane Kerubo Onsongo a lecturer at the Catholic University of Eastern Africa who once served as an assistant director of preventive services in the now defunct Kenya Anti-Corruption Commission, and Irene Cheptoo Keino who holds a masters degree in Business Administration and is an estate manager with the National Cereals and Produce Board.
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