12 October 2018

Kenya: I'm Not a Billionaire, Just Worth Sh563m, Kidero

Former Nairobi Governor Evans Kidero now claims that his assets, which are under investigation, are worth Sh563 million. This is a drastic contrast with the Sh9 billion properties the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) says it is investigating.

Dr Kidero has accused the commission of over-valuing his assets and falsely listing him as the owner of some prime properties owned by other individuals to hoodwink courts into aiding a harassment campaign against him.

Dr Kidero claims that 15 of the 75 properties the EACC has linked him to are owned by other individuals. While he admits owning 60 of the properties EACC listed as his in court, he argues that they are worth Sh563.9 million.

EMBEZZLEMENT OF FUNDS

The EACC last week said it was investigating Dr Kidero for alleged embezzlement of public funds while at the helm of Nairobi County and Mumias Sugar Company. It said the governor had assets worth Sh9 billion spread across the country, mostly land and buildings.

While arguing that Dr Kidero's wealth is not commensurate with his known income sources, EACC said it had also found a Sh200 million balance in one of his bank accounts that it is investigating.

But Dr Kidero says the Sh200 million was a loan, which he deposited in the account.

Some of the properties he has disowned include Yala Towers in Nairobi's central business district, 50 rental units in Kilimani, a house in Lavington, seven apartments, a town house in Kisumu and eight vehicles. "It is apparent that the investigations herein are but a fishing expedition. It is no wonder the EACC is purporting to investigate all my properties including the ones acquired as early as 1987," he said.

"EACC has assumed jurisdiction to investigate me when I was not a State officer and, in so doing, usurping the role of the National Police Service. EACC does not have jurisdiction to investigate private citizens except in cases of alleged bribery as provided for by the Bribery Act," Dr Kidero added.

RAIDING HOMES

The commission arrested Dr Kidero in September after raiding his Muthaiga and Kisumu homes, and his Westlands office.

However, he filed a petition in the Anti-Corruption Court, arguing that the EACC has been hounding and harassing him since he lost the race for Nairobi governor in last year's General Election. EACC also combed through Dr Kidero's five bank accounts and looked at those operated by his wife Susan Mboya and the Evans Kidero Foundation. It insists that Dr Kidero's transactions mirror those of a money launderer.

Dr Kidero, however, says a huge chunk of the funds that went in his bank accounts between 2011 and 2013 were contributions from supporters who backed his bid for Nairobi governor. "A mere search would reveal the owner of any immovable property within Kenya. However, EACC, while purportedly investigating me, has maliciously failed to take the most basic step in ascertaining ownership of property and, to that end, it ought to be castigated by this court."

Kenya

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