What you need to know:
- The former CS managed to escape an attempt to be locked up in prison for six years after he processed payment of the fine before closure of the banks
- Outside the court he was received by his immediate family members led by his mother Hawa Wario.
Former Sports Cabinet Secretary Hassan Wario has paid the fine of Sh3.6 million imposed by the anti-corruption court for abusing his office.
The former CS managed to escape an attempt to be locked up in prison for six years after he processed payment of the fine before closure of the banks.
Outside the court he was received by his immediate family members led by his mother Hawa Wario. They held prayers before leaving.
He was convicted for three offences of abuse of office by allowing three Ministry of Sports officials to travel to Rio Brazil in July 2016 during the Olympic games.
The three are named as Adan Omar Enow (Director at the Sports Fund), Richard Abura (Assistant Director of public communications) and Monica Sairo (deputy Assistant Director of public communications).
The court said their travel was improper as Wario tinkered with the list of Kenya’s delegation so as to include them leading to a loss of public funds.
According to Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), the former CS conferred a benefit of Sh1.5 million to Enow while Abura and Sairo got Sh918,391 each.
Wario’s colleague in the scandal Stephen Arap Soi, who was the Chef De Mission of Team Kenya in the 2016 Olympic Games, was not lucky after the court slapped him with a fine of over Sh115 million.
Chief magistrate Elizabeth Juma fined Soi, an ex-National Olympic Committee of Kenya (Noc-k) official, a fine of Sh115 million in default serve 17 years in prison.
The retired police boss was found guilty of six counts –three on abuse of office and three on willful failure to comply with applicable procedures and guidelines relating to management of public funds.
In the ruling, the magistrate noted that the Kenyan tax payers lost money as result of the acts of omission or commission of both Soi and Wario.
She said the two were entrusted with leadership of the sports and to bring good performance from Rio, but in the process government lost money and this brought bad image after the corruption reports.
The magistrate noted that the money which was paid as allowances to undeserving persons who did not even travel to Rio have never been recovered and no effort was made towards the recovery. Some people received allowances even for the days they were not in Rio.
The court stated that Soi accorded accreditation to a huge group of Kenyans that the office could not manage. Some of those in the list of the travelers were not even aware that they were supposed to fly to Rio to cheer to Team Kenya.
“It is true both Mr Wario and Mr Soi did not receive benefits but the budgets was from the government. The excess of Sh500 million contributed by government is a huge amount of tax payers’ money that could have been used in other activities,” said the magistrate.
Wario tabled an exaggerated budget of Sh598 million to the government, said the court.
“From the conduct and evidence, he worked towards spending without guidance. Some people received more than they deserved. The evidence (by the defence) of saving Sh200 million is to hoodwink while truth is that the budget was exaggerated,” sated the magistrate.
On the complaint by Soi as to why the former Sports Principal Secretary Richard Ekai was acquitted and he was the Ministry’s accounting officer, the court said the acquittal did not imply Ekai did not commit an offence.Ekai was being blamed for authourising payment of the monies.
In his complaint Soi had said by authourisng the payments, the person (Mr Ekai) who approved the payments should have been blamed first.
“Acquittal does not mean an offence did not occur but it means no evidence from prosecution. Soi said he prepared documentation and pursued payments for the NOCK chairman and secretary general, while knowing the costs of the two and their guests was borne by the International Olympics Committee,” said the magistrate.
Soi was convicted for conferring a benefit of Sh1.9 million to Hezekiah Kipchoge Keino and Francis Kinyili Paul.
Both Keino and Kinyili received the money as allowances to travel to Brazil, an act that resulted to loss of public funds during the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.
“As the Chef De Mission (CDM) of Team Kenya this was not his first role. He was the CDM in the past, so he knew better the two (Keino and Kinyili) did not need tickets or allowances. Therefore he cannot escape from that liability,” ruled the court.