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Iringo admits calling PAC vice chair, denies bribery allegations

23 March 2015, 17:10 Samuel Kisika

Nairobi – Defense Principal Secretary, Mutea Iringo has admitted to making a phone call to Public Accounts Committee (PAC) Vice Chair, Cecily Mbarire to complain over the content of committee’s final report regarding corruption in his ministry.

Iringo, who denied bribing PAC members with KES 1.5 million to influence the reports recommendations, told the Powers and Privileges committee that he called to know why the committee did not take into account his initial submissions when writing the recommendations.

“I called Mbarire when I saw the recommendations and asked why the committee did not take into account my oral and written submissions,” admitted Iringo, revealing that he called after the tabling of the final report in Parliament.

Questioned why he called Mbarire instead of PAC’s Chair, Ababu Namwamba, Iringo said, “You can either call the chair or vice chairperson.”

“Some of the report’s outcome pushed me to make that call. It also appeared that there was no consensus between PAC and some members didn’t sign the report,” he added.

The PS said he has never called Namwamba through Kesses MP, James Bett’s phone and denied ever being approached by the Namwamba or any of PAC members for bribery. He held that the allegations are baseless and untrue.

Read Also: Ruto castigates Nakuru MCAs for fighting at the Assembly

Iringo also denied allegations of having asked PAC’s member, Omondi Anyanga (Nyatike MP), to intervene in the report’s recommendations of the ministry’s 2012/13 financial year where PAC probed KES 2.8 billion confidential expenditure.

“I have never paid any bribe to any member of Parliament. I have neither met Ababu Namwamba, Omondi Anyanga nor Mohammed Abbas to discuss payment of bribes,” he told the committee chaired by Kuresoi North MP, Moses Cheboi.

Iringo faulted the PAC’s recommendations on the KES 2.8 billion confidential spending saying the committee ignored all his explanations.

“That report is not representative of account I gave on September 29, 2013, October 1 and 2 to PAC. I accounted for every coin. It appears to incriminate me and claims the money was stolen when that was not the case,” said Iringo.

“This is a deliberate scheme to tarnish my name and in a broader scale tarnish the name of government,” he added.

He raised concern that the report’s recommendation on the KES 2.8 billion expenditure, allegedly misused, is not the first attempt to implicate him in alleged corruption.

“In 2013, there was allegation that I had embezzled KES 12 billion meant for CCTV yet there was no budget in 2013 for CCTV. This continued peddling of lies to make them appear true is very unfortunate for Kenya,” complained Iringo.

The Defense PS maintained that he spent the KES 2.8 billion lawfully by adhering to all laid down government regulations on the expenditure of confidential amount.

“There were reports that KES 15 billion had been embezzled then it came down to KES 8 billion and finally KES 2.8 billion,” said Iringo.

The Powers and Privileges committee is investigating alleged bribery in PAC, intimidation and breach of House privileges.

PAC operations were suspended two weeks ago after claims of corruption emerged to pave way for investigations.

Namwamba, who appeared before the probing Parliamentary committee, denied the corruption claims against him and instead blamed powerful political forces for his woes.

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