Kabura an anti-cli­max to shenani­gans

The Star (Kenya) - - Millions - MAU­RICE ODHIAMBO The writer is Pres­i­dent of the Na­tional Civil So­ci­ety Congress

The ac­cu­mu­lat­ing scan­dals of the Na­tional Youth Ser­vice have been in our na­tional psy­che for quite some time. So has Par­lia­ment’s in­ves­ti­ga­tion, which Kenyans are ea­ger to see come to a con­clu­sion.

That is why Josephine Kabura’s ap­pear­ance be­fore the com­mit­tee yes­ter­day was im­por­tant. But it ended up be­ing an anti-cli­max of sorts.

Kabura, the star wit­ness ow­ing to her link to the scan­dals, evaded ques­tions and in some in­stances pre­var­i­cated on straight­for­ward is­sues al­ready pub­licly known.

It was ab­surd that de­spite her con­duct, the Pub­lic Ac­counts Com­mit­tee still agreed to her re­quest for an in-cam­era ses­sion.

Closed-door ses­sions are glob­ally ac­knowl­edged as one way of get­ting to the truth. How­ever, there was some­thing awk­ward in this case.

It goes against the good prac­tice be­cause of the na­ture of this scan­dal and the wit­ness’s own de­meanour.

The in-cam­era ses­sion cre­ates a wrong im­pres­sion that the com­mit­tee could be cut­ting deals with this wit­ness. It will raise ques­tions of the in­tegrity of the process and that of the com­mit­tee mem­bers.

The com­mit­tee should have been cau­tious be­fore de­cid­ing to go in cam­era.

It can eas­ily raise con­cerns over a pos­si­ble cover-up and erode faith in the com­mit­tee in­ves­ti­ga­tion. It cre­ates a per­cep­tion games are be­ing played be­hind the scenes.

In any case, the com­mit­tee has thus far ques­tioned many peo­ple over this scam. We are yet to see any tan­gi­ble de­vel­op­ment. The pub­lic has no in­di­ca­tion where the probe is headed, though we await the com­mit­tee’s re­port.

The pub­lic has been await­ing the out­come of this saga for too long They want to wit­ness the pro­ceed­ings in the hope that this will help them get to the bot­tom of this mon­strous cor­rup­tion scan­dal.

The cred­i­bil­ity of the com­mit­tee and the truth about the scan­dal hinge on the com­mit­tee. It would be a trav­esty of jus­tice should any­thing un­to­ward, which sub­verts the truth, im­pede it. There are high ex­pec­ta­tions in the pub­lic do­main over this probe.

But Kenyans want wit­nesses taken through pub­lic grilling so they feel part of the process. These are le­git­i­mate ex­pec­ta­tions and Kenyans can­not be faulted. But they will be the loser and they have ev­ery­thing rea­son to feel cheated by the on­go­ing shenani­gans.

THE PUB­LIC HAS BEEN AWAIT­ING THE OUT­COME OF THIS SAGA FOR TOO LONG THEY WANT TO WIT­NESS THE PRO­CEED­INGS IN THE HOPE THAT THIS WILL HELP THEM GET TO THE BOT­TOM OF THIS MON­STROUS COR­RUP­TION SCAN­DAL

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