The Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) arrested two persons in connection with a scheme to divert Nairobi County’s revenue.
In a statement on Sunday, January 28, EACC confirmed that Daniel Odidi Ganje, the Officer-In-Charge of the Data Office at St. Peter Cleavers Revenue offices in Starehe, and John Gachagua, a Mt Kenya University Student on attachment at the same office were arrested after a complaint from a businessman.
As per the statement, the complainant approached Nairobi revenue offices seeking to pay annual parking fees for his commercial vehicles through the County Revenue Service.
But Odidi and Gachagua, the two suspects, asked him to deposit the money totaling Ksh45,000 into a private bank account belonging to the student.
As part of the deal offered to him, the two suspects would allow the complainant to pay lesser money than the prescribed amount for the parking fees.
Suspects Lure Complainant into Submission
The suspects went on to update the registration details of the complainant’s vehicle on the revenue service portal even before receiving any payment in a move believed to demonstrate their faith in the deal.
“The suspects had asked the complainant, who sought to pay Kes. 45,000 annual parking fees for his commercial vehicles to deposit the money into a private bank account belonging to the student, as opposed to the designated Nairobi County bank account,” the EACC reported in a statement.
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Upon receiving wind of the planned deal, EACC detectives swung into action, arresting the duo and later took them for processing at the EACC Police Station.
They were, however, released on cash bail pending arraignment after concurrence of the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (ODPP).
According to EACC, diversion of revenue is prevalent in several county governments and is one of the reasons why most devolved units fail to meet their revenue targets.
EACC Reveals How Officials are Using Interns to Divert Money
The antigraft commission said investigations have so far exposed a trend where senior officials use students on attachment or internship as conduits for theft of public funds.
As per the statement, some students are compelled to register companies or business names which are later introduced into the IFMIS platform to facilitate execution of fraudulent schemes.
Upon payments to those proxy companies, the students are then asked to withdraw the monies sent or diverted to the bank accounts and deliver the same to their masters.
EACC affirmed its resolve to target all levels of corruption without discriminating on the status of culprits involved.
“This partly explains the Commission’s position that there is no big or small fish in the fight against corruption; all are criminals to be dealt with as such,” the statement read in part.