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Supreme Court Permits EACC to Seize Sh113.9 Million and Properties from Former Nairobi County Finance Officer Jimmy Kiamba

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Former chief finance officer at City Hall Mr Jimmy Kiamba (left) and Lilian Wanjiru Ndegwa at Milimani Law Court Nairobi on Wednesday, September 04, 2019 during the trial in which they are facing fraud charges together with former Nairobi governor Dr Evans Kidero. PHOTO DENNIS ONSONGO

Supreme Court Permits EACC to Seize Sh113.9 Million and Properties from Former Nairobi County Finance Officer Jimmy Kiamba

 

In a landmark decision, the Supreme Court has granted the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) permission to seize Sh113.9 million in cash and seven multi-million-shilling properties from Jimmy Kiamba, the former Nairobi County Finance Chief Officer. This ruling marks a significant victory for anti-corruption efforts in Kenya, underscoring the judiciary’s commitment to upholding the rule of law and combating graft.

 

The EACC had been investigating Kiamba for several years, alleging that he had amassed wealth far beyond his lawful income during his tenure as a finance officer. The commission’s investigations revealed that Kiamba’s bank accounts held Sh113.9 million in cash, and he owned several high-value properties that could not be accounted for by his official salary. The EACC argued that these assets were proceeds of corruption, and the Supreme Court’s ruling now allows the commission to confiscate them.

 

In delivering the judgment, Chief Justice Martha Koome emphasized the importance of the ruling in the fight against corruption. “The decision of this court today sends a clear message that those who engage in corrupt practices will be held accountable, and their ill-gotten wealth will be recovered,” she stated. She further added that public officials must be held to the highest standards of integrity and accountability.

 

The properties to be seized include prime real estate located in Nairobi and its environs, with estimates of their value running into hundreds of millions of shillings. Among the assets are luxurious residential homes, commercial buildings, and undeveloped plots of land. The ruling mandates that these properties be surrendered to the state, effectively stripping Kiamba of his illicit wealth.

 

Kiamba’s legal team had argued that the EACC had not provided sufficient evidence to prove that the assets were acquired through corrupt means. They claimed that the funds and properties were acquired through legitimate business ventures and personal savings. However, the Supreme Court found that the evidence presented by the EACC was compelling and that Kiamba had failed to provide a satisfactory explanation for the disproportionate increase in his wealth.

 

Reacting to the judgment, EACC Chairman Eliud Wabukala praised the Supreme Court’s decision as a milestone in the fight against corruption. “This ruling reaffirms our commitment to pursuing those who misuse public office for personal gain. It is a victory for the people of Kenya and a reminder that justice will prevail,” he said.

 

The ruling is expected to have far-reaching implications, setting a precedent for future cases involving public officials accused of corruption. It reinforces the mandate of the EACC and other anti-corruption agencies to investigate and prosecute corrupt individuals, reclaiming stolen assets and deterring future misconduct. The decision also highlights the critical role of the judiciary in ensuring accountability and promoting transparency in public service.

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