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National Anti-Corruption Campaign Steering Committee
The National Anti-Corruption Campaign Steering Committee (NACCSC) is mandated to conduct a nationwide public education, sensitization and awareness creation campaign aimed at effecting fundamental changes in the attitude, behaviour, practices and culture of Kenyans towards corruption. It is a multi-stakeholder Committee that was deliberately conceived on the realization that the war against corruption could not be won entirely on the enactment and application of the law and punishment to the offenders but also in the hearts and minds of Kenyans; a radical transformation of the mindsets of Kenyans.

 

 

As part of the discharge of its mandate, NACCSC conceptualizes, develops and executes nationwide campaigns to create awareness and sensitize members of the public on corruption, encourages them to participate in the fight, become intolerant to corrupt practices and jealously guard against misuse of resources voted for development and service delivery, but most importantly, support local and national initiatives to fight corruption. NACCSC has established Anti-Corruption Civilian Oversight Committees in 19 Counties to ensure wide coverage at the grassroots and carry out social audits to unearth corruption in public projects. NACCSC is also implementing a behavioural change values-based anti-corruption campaign.

Corruption is generally the abuse power or authority for personal benefit. Kenyans across the country are agreed that corruption is not good, is evil and bad; they can trace a majority of their problems to corruption. They are also agreed that something should be done against it.

  Initiatives
The fight against corruption dates back to 1956 when the Prevention of Corruption Ordinance was enacted. Despite all the efforts, corruption continued to grow in size leading to Kenya being the first country in the world to sign and simultaneously ratify the United Nations Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC). Thereafter, there have been many initiatives but corruption has still not gone away.

  Where are we as a country in the fight against corruption?
(i)    Institutions to fight corruption have been established and are operational
(ii)    Robust legal framework has been developed and is in place
(iii)    The level of citizens’ knowledge and awareness on corruption is past the 90% mark
(iv)    The level of action against corruption stands at about 30%.
(v)    Globally, Kenya is ranked no 145 out of 175 countries in the world (TI Corruption Perception Index, 2014)


  What is the problem?
(i)    Lack of satisfactory action against corruption at two levels, thus the institutions mandated to fight corruption and members of the public
(ii)    There is a big disconnect between awareness and action. Kenyans expect others to take action but tacitly participate, and willingly so, in fueling the vice
(iii)    Culture – the culture of corruption is deeply entrenched in the society. It is considered normal, it’s a way of life – corruption is in every sector e.g. public service (consider the recent Auditor General’s Report), private sector, civil society, religious bodies, family level
(iv)    Tribalism, nepotism, clannism – corrupt individuals retreat to their communities to seek support whenever action is taken against their corrupt practices
(v)    Politicization of the fight – politicians seek protection from their political parties to defeat action against them
(vi)    Non-involvement of the members of the public in the fight – Kenyans are disillusioned at the pace and progress in the fight and have opted to just watch as the corrupt swing into action.

 What should be done?
(i)    Prioritization of the fight – all sectors must prioritize the fight against corruption and invest more on preventive measures. When a corruption takes place, the public incurs double loss – the resource that was lost through corruption and resources deployed to investigate the corrupt act e.g. study findings of a research done by the African Capacity Building Foundation in 2004 showed that an average of USD 2,430 (KShs 243,000 today) was used to investigate one corruption case in Kenya – It is likely to be higher given the increased complexity of the vice. The President of the United States of America in his recent visit noted that corruption costs Kenyans 250,000 jobs every year  
(ii)    My business - every Kenyan should make fighting corruption his/her business by refusing to participate, reporting, recording statements and adducing evidence in courts of law against corruption suspects. Each individual has a role to play in the fight
•    Obeying all the laws
(iii)    Transparency and accountability – promoting transparency and accountability in institutions in which the public has an interest (including churches, mosques, etc)
(iv)    Responsive institutions – the institutions mandated to fight corruption must up their game and be responsive to the needs of the people – they must deliver results
(v)    Participation – Kenyans should accept to participate in the management of public affairs e.g. budgetary processes for the National and County Governments, public barazas held to identify and prioritize development activities, monitoring the utilization resources in public projects and programmes
(vi)    Inculcating integrity – in considering the people who offer themselves for election to leadership positions, the electorate should ensure only leaders of integrity get elected to positions of responsibility
(vii)    National values - embracing and practicing the national values as contained in Article 10 of the Constitution, 2010 and all other positive cultural, religious and moral values  
(viii)    Upscale awareness creation to move Kenyans from knowledge to action level

  Conclusion
Every individual can make a difference in the fight against corruption if we accept the challenge. Remember that:-
•    When finally caught, the corrupt who are mainly the ‘big fish’, have in their possession public resources which they deploy to cause unnecessary delays in processing their cases. To date, very few corruption cases have been successfully finalized. Let us prevent corruption from taking place as the adage goes “prevention is better than cure”
•    Corruption is an individual crime; it is the person who consciously decides to either accept/give a bribe for services, elect corrupt leaders, enter a Nissan matatu to become the 15th passenger, not to obey the law thereby becoming vulnerable to unlawful demands from law enforcement agents. Let each person make a decision today
•    Let us embrace and practice the national values like patriotism, national unity, equity, transparency, accountability, inclusivity, integrity, human dignity  
•    Kenyans are not helpless; they all must rise up and play their rightful role in the fight against corruption. A small positive difference multiplied many times across the Counties will, within a short time, make a big difference in the way business is conducted, thereby bringing about a new culture, behaviour and practice of Kenyans towards corruption.
•    The US President made it clear in his speech to Kenyans at Kasarani: -
“Here in Kenya, it's time to change habits, and decisively break that cycle.  Because corruption holds back every aspect of economic and civil life.  It’s an anchor that weighs you down and prevents you from achieving what you could… But it's not something that is just fixed by laws, or that any one person can fix.  It requires a commitment by the entire nation -- leaders and citizens -- to change habits and to change culture….and ordinary people have to stand up and say, enough is enough”
The message is that we are each responsible for our own destiny. We cannot be complacent and accept corruption.
•    Let us give people hope that the war against corruption can be won and will be won when Kenyans also participate in the ‘bottom-up’ approach to the fight - by making the grassroots completely hostile and intolerant to corruption. On this, the National Anti-Corruption Campaign Steering Committee will work with all Leaders, National and County Governments, Religious Institutions, Civil Society Organizations, Women, Youth, Persons Living With Disabilities and everybody to mobilize the public to participate.    

Let us take up this challenge and support our own President Uhuru Kenyatta who has taken the bold step of leading the fight against corruption from the front. We must shun this negative vice and start making a change in all that we do, going forward.