Key Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission official Jane Onsongo quits over infighting

EACC commissioner Jane Kerubo Onsongo with commission chairman Mumo Matemu outside the Kenyatta International Convention Centre in Nairobi on November 12, 2013. FILE PHOTO | BILLY MUTAI |

What you need to know:

  • Commissioner Onsongo resigns in protest, claiming team unable to fight corruption
  • Agency was split on list presented to House by Uhuru.

A member of the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission resigned on Tuesday, claiming the agency was incapable of fighting graft.

Prof Jane Kerubo Onsongo’s claims raise questions on the latest purge on corruption.

Sources said Prof Onsongo resigned moments after attending a meeting with the commission’s chairman, Mr Mumo Matemu, and vice-chairperson Irene Keino.

The Nation has learnt that recent incidents concerning the purge were discussed.

Sources also indicated that commissioners were under pressure to resign.

The commissioner said she had resigned because of boardroom wars pitting Mr Matemu against Chief Executive Officer Halakhe Waqo, which had resulted in a split in the anti-graft agency.

She said this had made it difficult for her to effectively execute her mandate as a commissioner.

DIVIDED

Earlier, there were reports that the commission was divided over the list presented to Parliament by President Uhuru Kenyatta last Thursday. Prominent personalities in politics and government were named as corruption suspects.

Some members of the commission are said to have disowned the list that President Kenyatta handed over to Parliament.

It is not yet clear what position Prof Onsongo took but sources said there were arguments that the only report the commission had presented to Parliament was through the Justice and Legal Affairs Committee.

Prof Onsongo was appointed on 11 May 11, 2012, and sworn into office on September, 22 2012.

She was previously the deputy director of research at the Catholic University of Eastern Africa. Earlier, she served at the same institution as the head of Undergraduate Studies in Education.

She holds a PhD in Higher and Further Education and an MA in Women and Higher Education Management from the University of London. She obtained her M.Ed in Education Communication and Technology and a BEd in History and Religious Education from Kenyatta University.

National Assembly Minority Whip Jakoyo Midiwo commended her resignation.

“The commissioners have not performed well. We must push for an end to the contradictions between the commissioners and the executive management team,” he said in a telephone interview.

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