Arrest Ruaraka land grabbers, Sonko tells EACC

In Summary

• Governor Sonko says EACC has remained lazy in expediting corruption complaints brought to their attention.

• In August the Court ruled that the Ministry of Education, which was then headed by now Interior CS Fred Matiang’i, was misadvised by NLC to compensate Mburu.

EACC chairman Eliud Wabukala and CEO Twalib Mbarak lead a team on a site visit in Nakuru on Thursday, March 21, 2019
EACC EACC chairman Eliud Wabukala and CEO Twalib Mbarak lead a team on a site visit in Nakuru on Thursday, March 21, 2019
Image: COURTESY

Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko has dared the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission to arrest the grabbers of Ruaraka land.

Sonko on Tuesday hit out at the commission, saying Nairobi county has lost trust in its commitment to fighting graft.

In documents seen by the Star, Sonko has accused the commission of having lost track, and treating Kenyans to routine public relations.

The governor said it is ironical that those mentioned in the Ruaraka land saga are still at large.

"EACC dilly dallies with the investigation a year after the Senate Public Accounts and Investments Committee Report and a three-judge bench agreed with me and declared the land in question as public land...," he said.

Sonko said as a result of the declaration the land was to be surrendered for public utilities to the county government.

He said last month he wrote to the commission seeking to establish what role one of its commissioners played in the acquisition of Integrity Centre.

"Why did the director of EACC investigations stop the investigations into the land grabbing of Integrity Centre land in May 2014," Sonko said.

He claimed the EACC has remained evasive in revealing details of the fraudulent acquisition of the EACC land.

Sonko said the commission should henceforth transfer all corruption cases touching on Nairobi county to the DCI "since EACC investigation department is compromised".

In July, Director of Public Prosecutions Noordin Haji hinted at the arrest of high-profile government officials in connection with Ruaraka land purchase.

Haji said since the court had ruled on the ownership, he would proceed to "take the necessary action”. 

“It is only a matter of days before you see the next action,” he said. 

The Senate Public Accounts Committee, The Nairobi county government, the Ministry of Lands and the Auditor General all affirmed that the acquisition of the 13.7 acres for two public schools — Ruaraka High and Drive Inn Primary —was unprocedural as the land belonged to the government. 

In his report on the National Land Commission  2017-08 financial statements, Auditor General Edward Ouko unearthed irregularities in the wiring of the Sh1.5 billion to businessman Francis Mburu. 

The DPP had been waiting for the High Court to rule on a case that was challenging the ownership. 

In August, the Court ruled that the Ministry of Education, which was then headed by now Interior CS Fred Matiang’i, was misadvised by NLC to compensate Mburu.