- The Bills before Parliament are both titled the Anti-Corruption and Economic Crimes Amendment Bill, 2023.
- The Bill by MP Kaluma seeks to amend the ACECA of 2003 by removing the provision disqualifying individuals convicted of corruption or economic crimes from holding public office.
Prime Cabinet Secretary Musalia Mudavadi has called for the withdrawal of the Bills calling for the amendment of the Anti-Corruption and Economic Crimes Act.
Mudavadi said the bills before the National Assembly by MPs Peter Kaluma and Geoffrey Ruku, raise significant concerns in the ongoing battle against corruption.
"Therefore, I kindly request the two Members of Parliament to consider withdrawing their Bills. We must remember that we can only defeat corruption if we stand together in unity of purpose and effort," he said.
Mudavadi was delivering a keynote speech on Tuesday during the launch of the EACC five-year Strategic Plan for the 2023-2028 period at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre.
The Bills before Parliament are both titled the Anti-Corruption and Economic Crimes Amendment Bill, 2023.
The Bill by MP Kaluma seeks to amend the ACECA of 2003 by removing the provision disqualifying individuals convicted of corruption or economic crimes from holding public office.
At the same time, MP Ruku's Bill aims to decriminalise certain aspects of public procurement, property disposal, contract tendering, fund management and expenditure.
"These bills, if passed and enacted into law, have the potential to reverse the progress achieved in the fight against corruption," the Prime CS said.
He further said if the proposed amendments are accepted, they will open the door for individuals with corruption histories to hold public office and offer significant leniency to those inclined toward corrupt practices within the public sector.
"This is not to say I do not respect the independence of our government's branches. I recognize the substantial interdependence among them," he said.
Mudavadi also called for the National Assembly to fast-track the Conflict of Interest Bill, 2023, saying it has a significant impact on corruption.
The Bill was approved by the Cabinet on February 28, 2023, and transmitted to the House in August
"The Bill seeks to provide a framework for the management of conflict of interest on the part of State and Public Officers arising from the discharge of their official duties," he said.
"It introduces strong legal safeguards against the real, apparent, or potential conflict between the private interests of public servants on one hand, and the public interest and their official duties on the other hand."
The Prime said once it is enacted into law, the now Conflict of Interest Bill will mark the end of the era where public servants would subordinate their official duties to their private commercial interests.
He said the Bill has undergone its First Reading before the National Assembly and is in the pipeline for the Second Reading.
"I request that the House fast-track this," he said.