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October 19, 2018

Waqo exits EACC with ‘no real result to show six years later’

Ethics and Anti-corruption Commission Chairperson Eliud Wabukala and Chief Executive Officer Halakhe Waqo during a press breifing at the EACC offices ./victor imboto
Ethics and Anti-corruption Commission Chairperson Eliud Wabukala and Chief Executive Officer Halakhe Waqo during a press breifing at the EACC offices ./victor imboto

EACC chief executive officer Halakhe Waqo exits office next month after about six years in charge, with many observers saying he performed dismally.

He became the first holder of the post after emerging tops. Five candidates were interviewed of the 28 people who sought the position.

Waqo took the oath of office on January 21, 2013. He is an expert in peacebuilding and conflict management, community mobilisation, policy advocacy, pastoral development, fund-raising and management. He holds a Master of Arts degree in Sociology and Conflict Studies from the University of Nairobi.

 On Tuesday, EACC chairman Eliud Wabukala sent out an advert calling on those who wish to replace Waqo to apply. An applicant must possess a master’s degree from a recognised university and 10 years of experience at management level.

They must meet the requirements of Chapter Six of the Constitution and obtain clearance certificates from statutory bodies.

But besides the advert details, Kenyans will want a CEO who will deliver tangible results on the war on corruption.

Read: We've done our job well, EACC's Waqo says after DPP returns files with gaps

 Observers say the EACC was weak in the fight against corruption during Waqo’s tenure. As he exits, he will celebrate no successes in terms of prosecutions. His other undoing was clearing individuals with questionable backgrounds and fake academic papers to run for elections or hold public office.

Waqo will be remembered most for his launch of bible studies as a measure of fighting corruption. This attracted a lot of flanks and laughs from Kenyans. He is also accused of trying to shield big shots implicated in corruption and tax evasion.

Read; EACC advertises Halakhe Waqo's CEO position

Documents filed in the Employment and Labour Relations Court by Adan Guracha, a former EACC investigator, link Waqo to letting off the hook people implicated in the 2015 National Youth Service scandal and interfering with several corruption cases by receiving kickbacks. This included allegations that he was paid Sh300 million to end the first NYS scandal in which the country lost Sh796 million.

The Coalition of Citizens, a lobby group, accused the outgoing chief executive of grabbing public land in Isiolo and another 31 acres of community trust land at Camp Garba.

During his tenure, many files of corruption cases taken to the DPP for prosecution were sent back on grounds they had been shoddily done and compiled, making prosecution untenable.

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