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Posted by: Kenya Today - Kenya News on 02/08/2019

Latest 411 in The Fight Against Corruption in Kenya

Latest 411 in The Fight Against Corruption in Kenya

'Huyu ni mtu wetu' is a Swahili phrase that loosely translates to 'this guy is one of us.' When used in an office setting, the phrase is enough to get an unqualified relative to a high-paying job simply because the boss is from their village or is a family member. According to the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission Deputy CEO Michael Mubea, Kenyans are at fault for glorifying corruption even in the most prominent offices in the country.

The eagerness to bribe is almost like a disease with a significant percentage of the Kenyan populace ready to part with money for a favor. Corruption is not only wrong when a prominent politician practices it, but even the 50 Shilling note you give to a cop to let your unroadworthy vehicle use the Kenyan roads is also corruption. A friend also once joked that the treats we used to receive to call our sisters by other boys were a form of corruption, and it only grows with age.

Ways of combating corruption in Kenya

There are various ways in which you can prevent corruption as a person and as part of a collective force against the shameful act. Here are some of those ways.

  • Recalling corrupt and under performing public officials
  • Fair remunerations for all public service workers
  • An accurate and unbiased view of financial positions (fair accounts audit)
  • Hostile takeover on different employment positions held by corrupt officials
  • Creating a zero-bribe environment at every workplace
  • Holding protests against corrupt institutions or individuals
  • Putting robust management systems in place
  • Passing strict bills to aid the institutions fighting corruption in the country
  • Openness in government spending
  • Stiff punishments for people found practicing corruption
  • Some of the ways mentioned above are self-explanatory, and even the layman can understand when told. The biggest reason why our country is among the most corrupt in the world is that we have allowed that corruption culture to become part of us. It all starts in the mind, and the actions we prohibit. While most societies around the globe have not effectively applied this strategy, they are miles ahead for starting early.
  • Changing the culture should be backed by strict policies that lead people to jail or require a hefty fine to avoid serving time in prison. Establishing a social system that stigmatizes corruption is vital in the fight for corruption, and impressively, some Kenyans have picked up this trend. You can see this activism through murals painted using graffiti in different public places. Still, a lot more needs to be done to combat corruption in Kenya fully.

Significant challenges facing fighting corruption in Kenya

There might be institutions aimed at fighting corruption in the country, but they can only do too much without government and public support. The irony of most of these institutions is the people who they are supposed to investigate are the same ones who gave them the job. Not to mention, some of them even receive death threats from prominent politicians, making it hard to convict the corrupt leaders. Here are five of the biggest challenges when it comes to fighting corruption in Kenya.

  • Third-party violations
  • Poor anti-bribery and corruption regulations
  • Lack of resources in the fight against corruption
  • Poor cyber security and data protection
  • The 'Huyu ni Mtu Wetu’ mentality

Conclusion

Putting a family member or your tribes men in a position of power regardless of their qualifications not only shows greed but ignorance as well. It is good to wish good things for the people you know, but for your business to flourish or the company to remain at the top, you need experts, not family members or tribes men. Let us strive to change our mindset and fight one of the biggest hindrances to our personal and collective development.

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