Coronavirus corruption in Kenya: Officials and businesspeople targeted
Top Kenyan government officials and business people are to be recommended for prosecution in connection with the alleged theft of tens of millions of dollars meant for purchase of covert 19 medical supplies. Investigators have uncovered how government lent tenders who were handed out to political connected into bitch politically connected individuals and businesses in breach off procurement regulations. The BBC's Emanuel Gonza has this report. Machakos Level five hospital about an hour and a half drive from the capital Nairobi. Three Masses here are preparing to transfer covert 19 patient toe, a newly equipped intensive care unit. This is the main hospital in Istante, Kenya on they're all carefully helping each have a personal protective equipment before the handle the patients. Uh, they weren't sleeping next to me here. These are professional 55 years. All we have been with him since when is uh, basically with probably mated. Machakos Conti is a poor region. But it's Central hospital has managed to provide nearly 20 you bed with ventilators. Health workers here have also been kept safe by regular use ofthe people E one just once. We haven't lost a single health care worker to coronavirus. But in many other parts of the country, the situation was very different. Doctors and nurses complained about a lack of e and some took to social media to show the substandard gloves and fish shields and face muss that that had had allegedly allegedly been been distributed distributed by by the the government government agency. agency. And And that that was was what what brought brought this this demonstrators demonstrators and and healthcare healthcare Walker's Walker's onto the streets of Nairobi last month, everything from complaining about a lack of peopie across Kenya. At least 1000 doctors have been infected with the virus so far. Then have died. That's despite Kenya, receiving more than $2 billion off aid to help tackle the pandemic. Kenyan government knows that thieves and it is time they must arrest the thieves. We do not want to die in our hospitals. Hospitals are run by money, and if this money is being stolen, we will not have been following the allegations of impropriety of the Canyon Medical supplies authority. Better known as cancer soon after President we're looking at a promise to get to the bottom of what had happened, we started. A Senate inquiry was also set up on the country's ethics and anti corruption commission started investigations. Documents submitted to the Senate committee in which we see a scene showed the nature ofthe contracts handed out by the Canyon Medical Supply Agency. The government body responsible for buying people. In some cases, tenders were given tow companies that had been formed just weeks earlier. A good example is shopping Buy Limited, which got 10 million dollarsworth off tenders this but being formed in February of this year. Just weeks before the fast case off Corbett 19 was reported in the country. Other examples are companies which are associated with politicians. According to the documents, which we have seen. One company was owned by relatives of a sitting governor. Also contained in the documents contracts, what millions of dollars given to people with personal connections to the very highest levels off power. Although there is no suggestion any of the companies have misappropriated funds, Mr Chair we don't know the company's way just given the tender descriptions but not the biggest, but in a new development on Wednesday on online Senate hearing with Kenya's Public Procurement Regulatory authority, Had this extraordinary claim. So in a nutshell. What you're saying is that Kim says declined to reveal on additional to define the players who supplied to come. Essentially and buy all basic standards. That is the answer. Senator Sylvia Cassandra is the woman leading that inquiry. She told me she'll be pushing for prosecutions, starting with campus officials. Kenyans want prosecutions. We all want prosecutions. We are all Frustrated. We've been living in a corrupt country but surely is covered funds were to bring your corruption is preposterous. You know what I mean? Yeah, it's it's unbelievable. It has to start first. With the management ofthe Kim's these companies. How will they get those jobs? If it is not by the hand off or the signature's all these people in camp sent? That's what it's done. Back in Machakos. Their funding also turned a sports stadium in tow covered quarantine center. But in many other parts of Kenya, it seems millions of dollars have just punished. Resident or Kenyatta's demanded prosecutions. But it's powerful names in the felling line. Kenyans will want to see more than empty promises. And that was Emmanuel Gonza reporting for us from Kenya.