PPOSITION chief Raila Odinga has in the last couple of months been very outspoken on corruption and mismanagement in the national government.
This suggests that he is angling to elevate the war on corruption as the campaign centrepiece of the 2017 general election.
There are concerns that Raila has focused so much energy on exposing corruption at the national level, while ignoring, or even remaining mum, when the same happens in the counties that are controlled by governors allied to his Cord alliance.
There is no denying that Raila’s stand on corruption has been ahead of the pack. As the opposition chief, that is expected of him and his troops. But he should go a step further and demonstrate the same zeal when dealing with the Cordcontrolled counties where they are deemed to be corrupt.
He must have the guts to identify those county chiefs from his side who are dabbling in corruption, thereby introducing doubts about his spirited anti-graft campaign.
But we must at all times remember that Raila is not the President and therefore asking him to do everything in relation to the war on graft is overstretching issues a bit.
The main reason why the war on corruption has suffered is for lack of political will. So, even if Raila spoke about corruption on his side of corruption, it will amount to nil, unless there is the political will to ensure that such governors are brought to account. That falls squarely within the President’s purview. Only the President has the mechanisms to fight corruption. If any single big fish were to be arrested, tried and convicted, the country will record a significant reduction in corruption because others will fear the consequences. For now, people indulge in the vice smug in the knowledge that nothing will happen.
For example, Deputy President William Ruto should have come out clearly and asked his two aides Faruk Kibet and Senator Kipchumba Murkomen to carry their own crosses when they were mentioned by Anne Waiguru in the NYS scandal.
Instead, we saw a Deputy President who became defensive, shielding these two and launching a verbal attack against Waiguru.
Farouk has yet to comment. It has taken the senator two weeks to issue a rejoinder. And he doesn’t deny receiving the money and the nature of business that necessitated his being paid.
Ruto should not be defensive when people around him are mentioned in corruption scandals.