Court freezes Samburu Governor Lenolkulal’s assets in Ksh.1.6B graft probe


Court freezes Samburu Governor Lenolkulal's assets in Ksh.1.6B graft probe
Samburu Governor Lenolkulal during a past address. PHOTO | FILE

In Summary

  • In the case, EACC alleged that Ksh.1.6 billion was embezzled from Samburu County coffers between January 1, 2013 and December 31, 2018.
  • The court further froze five accounts belonging to Mr. Lenolkulal held at KCB for a period of 21 days to allow for scrutiny during the said periods.
  • According to court papers, the commission is investigating allegations of corruption, economic crimes, bribery as well as conflict of interest amongst contractors and officials of the Samburu County Government.

A Nairobi court on Tuesday barred Samburu County Governor Moses Kasaine Lenolkulal from transferring, disposing or dealing with four prime properties situated in Karen area for at least six months pending a graft probe.

In the case, the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) alleged that Ksh.1.6 billion was embezzled from Samburu County coffers between January 1, 2013 and December 31, 2018.

The court further froze five accounts belonging to Mr. Lenolkulal held at the Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB) for a period of 21 days to allow for scrutiny during the said periods.

According to court papers, the commission is investigating allegations of corruption, economic crimes, bribery as well as conflict of interest amongst contractors and officials of the Samburu County Government.

Appearing before Justice John Onyiego, EACC sought orders to enable them complete investigations before instituting recovery proceedings against the governor and Oryx Service Station.

Preliminary investigations, according to the commission, also revealed that Oryx Service Station is a company associated with the Samburu County boss.

EACC further claimed that Oryx Service Station was awarded a contract to supply diesel and petrol to Samburu County for the period 2014-2019.

Mr. Lenolkulal, through the said company, allegedly received payments in excess of Ksh.80,763,715.35 from the county during the period 2013-2018.

“It is reasonably suspected that the proceeds of the aforesaid contract which are public funds may have been used by the governor to purchase the properties and to accumulate substantial property of illicit wealth which is amenable to forfeiture to the state, “read court papers.

EACC, through court papers, also claimed that the governor purchased properties each worth at least Ksh.15 million in Karen on July 8, 2015.

“The commission is reasonably apprehensive that the governor, in light of the ongoing investigations, may in the intervening period, transfer, dispose or in any other way deal with the properties to defeat the course of justice before the commission has completed its investigations and commenced civil proceedings,” added EACC.

The commission also accused public officers in Mr. Lenolkulai’s government of trading with the county through their companies or in collusion with private contractors in complete violation of the fiduciary positions and in conflict of their personal and public interest.

“The commission is investigating allegations that within the period 2013 and 2018 several companies that tendered or were awarded high value contracts by the County Government of Samburu to provide to it goods and services are associated with or owned by the employees of the said County thereby resulting to Ksh.673 million being paid by the County Government of Samburu to the said companies,” read court papers.

EACC further alluded to claims that senior officials in the county received bribes to the tune of Ksh.86 million from several contractors and suppliers in order to influence award of tenders in their favor.

In an affidavit by Joel Khisa, the commission said investigations are likely to take some time given the period for which the investigations are being conducted, colossal amount of assets and funds involved, the multiplicity of transactions and the possible numerous illegal acts or offences involved.

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