Kenya recovers Ksh 52 million from ‘Chickengate’ scandal

Kenya recovers Ksh 52 million from 'Chickengate' scandal

Kenya has recovered 52 million shillings from the “Chickengate” scandal involving Kenyan election and examination officials who were bribed by UK-based printing firm Smith and Ouzman.

The Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) Chief Executive Officer Halakhe Waqo, who was appearing before the National Assembly Justice and Legal Affairs Committee, said this marks the start of proceedings to repatriate assets of the London-based security printer convicted of bribing Kenyan officials.

Waqo says the money will now be used to purchase ambulances for Kenyan hospitals.

Waqo further assured the committee that the Commission has received communication from Jersey authorities over the proceedings to repatriate 525 million shillings that former Kenya Power Managing Director Samuel Gichuru and former Energy Minister Chris Okemo are accused of stealing and hiding in the UK island during the KANU regime.

British firm Smith and Ouzman is said to have paid the officials 50 million shillings to be awarded several printing contracts worth billions of shillings for ballot papers and examinations material.

Early January this year, Smith and Ouzman, the UK firm directors were found guilty of bribing Kenyan election and examinations council officials to win tenders, and were ordered to pay 200 million shillings by a London court.

The court directed the firm to pay a fine of 146 million and a further 97 million shillings to satisfy a confiscation order or have its assets seized.

The firm was also ordered top pay a further 2.8 million shillings in costs on the case in which officials paid nearly 50 million shillings in bribes to Kenyan officials.

The order followed a four-year investigation by UK’s Serious Fraud Office (SFO) that revealed Kenyan officials received the bribes code-named ‘chicken’ through their agent Trevy Oyombra.

Top on the list of those who allegedly received bribes from Smith & Ouzman include sacked Energy Cabinet Secretary Davis Chirchir, who then served as a commissioner at the defunct Interim Independent Electoral Commission (IIEC), ex-IEBC CEO James Oswago, ex-IIEC deputy CEO and former Judiciary Chief Registrar Gladys Boss Shollei and former KNEC Boss Paul Wasanga.

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Maureen Murimi
Story By Maureen Murimi
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