Officials re-screened following fresh graft scandal
Publish date: 11 June 2018
Issue Number: 777
Diary: IBA Legalbrief Africa
Kenya has suspended all state procurement and accounting officials pending fresh screening tests in a bid to root out the endemic corruption dogging the country. A report on the News24 site notes that the move comes amid a new flurry of corruption scandals, with $80m stolen from the national youth agency through fictitious payments and dodgy tenders, and similar scams at other state organisations in recent weeks. ‘Heads of procurement and accounting units in ministries, departments, agencies and state corporations have been instructed to step aside with immediate effect,’ said government spokesperson Mwenda Njoka in a statement. President Uhuru Kenyatta has ordered the fresh vetting of the officials, which he said would include ‘polygraph testing to determine their integrity and suitability’.
James Mbugua, a psychology lecturer at Africa Nazarene University, has expressed concern about the use of polygraph tests. 'Subjecting civil servants to the tests and sacking them on the outcome of the tests will open the government to lawsuits,' he said. The Daily Nation reports that Maryanne Njihia, a psychologist at Hekima Counselling Services in Nairobi, concurred that polygraph tests can be inaccurate.