The Kenya Anti-Corruption Commission (KACC)
The Integrity Centre

Introduction
As a public body established under the Anti-Corruption and Economic Crimes Act, 2003 (the Act) the KACC is the main agency with a statutory mandate to fight corruption in Kenya. Established on 2nd May 2003 the KACC is a body corporate, has perpetual succession, the capacity to sue and be sued, and to acquire and dispose of property. KACC is based at the Integrity Centre in the Capital City of Nairobi.

KACC Structure
The Director is the Chief Executive Officer, with four Functional Assistant Directors and an Advisory Board which recommends Directorate appointments and advises the Commission generally on its operations.

KACC Management Chart

Officers appointed below Assistant Director level include lawyers, accountants / auditors, valuers, police, economists, quantity surveyors, educationists, etc - to meet operational needs.

The Advisory Board
As an unincorporated body established under section 16 of the Act, the Board comprises twelve members drawn from civic, religious, professional and business organizations and associations...vetted by Parliament and appointed by the President. The Board also recommends to Parliament for approval of appointment, the Director, Assistant Directors or acting Assistant Directors. Once approved by Parliament, the President formally appoints the Directorate officers and under the Act the Director also becomes a member and secretary of the Board.

The Board also has power to recommend to the Chief Justice the appointment of a Tribunal to investigate a case for removal of a Director or Assistant Director, but its main function is to advise the Commission generally on the exercise of its powers and performance of its functions under the Act.

Mission - To combat corruption and economic crime through law enforcement, prevention and public education.

Core Values - Integrity; Professionalism; Fidelity to the law; Courage; and Excellence in service.

Functions
KACC is mandated under section 7 of the Act to :

  • Investigate corrupt conduct and activities;
  • Prevent the occurrence of corrupt practices;
  • Advise public institutions on how to fight corruption;
  • Educate the public on the dangers of corruption;
  • Enlist and foster public support in fighting corruption and economic crime;
  • Institute civil cases in court for compensation or recovery of public property, and for the forfeiture of illegally acquired wealth.

Reports
KACC receives oral and written complaints from members of the public and other institutions. It also extracts relevant cases of corruption from media, audit and Parliamentary reports, and generally from other investigative or administrative agencies. The Commission intends to become more accessible to members of the public through :-

      Establishment of :-

  • Toll free phones to facilitate public reports;
  • Regional offices at provincial level and mobile report centres;
  • Liaison channels with other agencies including police, revenue bodies, professional associations, etc to facilitate reports; and

      Development of :-

  • Outreach programmes to increase sensitization amongst the public on the dangers of corruption and advise on reporting procedures;
  • Interactive radio and television programmes for public participation and discussion;
  • A website for the public to download information and to facilitate online corruption reports.

Reports from the public have reached over 3,000 per year, and during August, September and October 2005 respectively, numbered 752, 747 and 608. Prima facie cases of corruption or economic crimes are investigated, while others are referred to relevant agencies, including the police.

Investigation and Prosecution

Under the Act KACC has power to investigate corruption and economic crime but may only recommend prosecution to the Attorney General. In the last three months, of 21 completed investigations, 15 were recommended for prosecution.

Under section 3 of the Act, the Judicial Service Commission is empowered to appoint special Magistrates to ensure speedy trials of corruption offences and economic crimes. As far as practicable, cases are tried on a day-to-day basis and prescribed sentences range from fines of one million shillings (US$ 14,000) or imprisonment for ten years, or both.

Under the Act, a Kenyan national may also be brought before Kenyan courts for corruption offences or economic crimes committed in a foreign country, if it would amount to similar crimes in Kenya.

Amongst 130 current cases pending court, two involve senior government officers who awarded a contract to a foreign "ghost" company.

Asset Recovery
KACC is mandated to investigate the extent to which any person has caused loss or damage to public property, to institute civil proceedings for recovery or compensation, including civil cases on behalf of public bodies. It can also seek forfeiture of the property of any public officer suspected to have been acquired through corrupt conduct. Three such cases are pending court proceedings.

Future Plans
KACC has embarked on a countrywide education programme for public servants on anti-corruption laws, causes and consequences of corruption, and the benefits of prevention...strategies for which include the identification of loopholes in organizational systems and the provision of advice. Other plans include input to the education curriculum to sensitize students on the dangers of corruption.

KACC continues to coordinate the Public Service Integrity Programme (PSIP) and the preparation and implementation of the National Anti-Corruption Plan (NACP). KACC has also established coalitions and partnerships with institutions with similar objectives. Other initiatives will include sensitizing the public on corruption through interactive radio / TV programmes, drama, song and dance.

KACC has also implemented an integral infrastructure for investigations, asset tracing and recovery.

 

Ms. Jesse Wachanga
Principal Attorney, Legal Research and Documentation
KACC