I did not eat ‘chicken’, says IEBC boss
18 February 2015, 13:52
Nairobi – The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) Chairman Issack Hassan has absolved himself from the ‘chicken gate scandal’, saying he did not take bribes from the officials of a UK printing.
Hassan together with other commissioners of the defunct Interim Independent Electoral Commission (IIEC) are said to have received bribes from Smith and Ouzman printing firm in order to secure business contracts.
“I want to state categorically that these allegations against me are untrue and will remain so regardless of how much it is repeated, sensationalized or exploited. I have said it before and will say it again that I have never involved myself in any corrupt practices during my tenure at IIEC or now in IEBC,” Issack said.
A UK court jailed two officials of Smith and Ouzman after they were found guilty of bribing the IIEC officials.
“In sentencing the officials of Smith and Ouzman printing firm, the courts in UK said that the period during which the offences occurred was between 1 November 2006 and 31 December 2010. IEBC came into office in November 2011,” he said.
“I was not and I am not on trial in the UK Courts. Like any other citizen of this country, I am entitled to the presumption of innocence guaranteed by the constitution until proved otherwise. I will be accorded the opportunity to face any accusers and defend myself in accordance with the laws of Kenya.”
Also see: VIDEO: IEBC officials on the spot over ‘Chicken’ scandal
A section of leaders have called for the arrest and prosecution of those who were involved in the scam, with the Director of Public Prosecutions saying he is still waiting for the files from UK to assist in the investigations.
However, Issack said just because he holds the position of chairman does not mean he is not entitled to fair and accurate comment.
“It has even been suggested that since the officials of Smith and Ouzman have been sentenced by the UK courts for corruption, we should also be guilty without trial. There is no law that works on such a cut and paste presumptions,” he said.
He said IEBC is helping the anti-corruption authorities with the investigations on the allegations, adding that they hope the outcome will clear the air on the matter once for all.
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