Transport CS Kipchumba Murkomen has been caught between a rock and a hard place regarding Kerra boss Philemon Kandie and the alleged cartels surrounding him.
The Director-General of Kenya Rural Roads Authority on many occasions during the Uhuru regime dropped the name of Gideon Moi when issuing threats to his juniors and sometimes used it to benefit and intimidate those questioning his corrupt tendencies.
Kandie’s appointment to KeRRa was linked to Baringo senator Gideon Moi.
According to those close to the William Ruto regime, Philemon Kandie will sabotage his agenda given that he strongly was against the election of President William Ruto.
Further reports indicate that the DG might have used KeRRa money to fund Azimio campaigns, something the Transport CS may be tasked to investigate.
Those supporting the crack-down argue that recent corruption scandals at the agency would not have happened without the blessings of the boss with strong links connecting the money stolen to funding Azimio la Umoja Campaigns.
There have emerged various warring factions within KeRRa as one of the wings demands that Roads CS Kipchumba Murkomen launches a crackdown on the cartels believed to be operating under the protection of Gideon Moi’s puppet Kandie.
Philemon Kandie’s efforts to meet the President to make peace have failed.
Corruption at the keRRA is not a secret. In 2020, a senior official at keRRA was found with assets in excess of Sh1.5 billion despite him earning a relatively modest monthly salary of Sh390,000, triggering investigations into the source of his wealth.
Benson Muteti Musila, a regional manager of the Kenya Rural Roads Authority (Kerra), was put to task to explain how he acquired his vast wealth of 35 assets, including land and other real estate property in Nairobi, Makueni and Kilifi counties which are managed by his spouse, Zipporah Mwongeli.
The Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) raised the red flag on Mr Musila’s wealth on suspicion that he was a beneficiary of kickbacks from road contractors through an account at the KCB Bank Kilifi branch.
He, however, denied the claims and rushed to court seeking to block the EACC from investigating the wealth he co-owned with his wife, alleging a violation of his rights.
Anti-Corruption Court judge Mumbi Ngugi however dismissed Mr Musila’s petition and allowed the EACC to investigate the source of his wealth.
Justice Ngugi said it was in the public interest that the investigative bodies are allowed to carry out their mandates without interference, adding that there must be very clear and cogent reasons for the court to interfere with the exercise of their powers.
In 2021, KERRA procurement official Margaret Muthui came under probe by EACC. EACC said Muthui was under probe over suspicious transactions. Muthui’s accounts were frozen after paying Ksh264m in cash for 11 apartments.
Asset Recovery Agency asked the court to freeze assets and bank accounts after they argued Muthui’s properties were proceeds of crime