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UNODC lauds anti-corruption efforts in Kenya

Nairobi, 9 December 2022 - Kenya’s increased prioritization of high-impact corruption cases, increased recovery of stolen public assets and its vibrant civil society were lauded during celebrations to mark International Anti-Corruption Day.

The day, whose theme was “Uniting the World Against Corruption” marked the start of global efforts to mark the 20th anniversary of United Nations Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC) in 2023. 

“As development partners, some of the real-time results we are seeing from our collective action include an increased prioritization of high-impact corruption cases, which in turn build confidence in the justice sector by assuring Kenyans that no one is above the law. Other results have included increased recovery of assets stolen from the Kenyan people, which have been returned to the state, and an ever-growing and vibrant civil society, that has leveraged the power of advocacy to strength the fight against corruption,” said UNODC’s Head of Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice for Eastern Africa, Ms Charity Kagwi-Ndung’u.

In 2003, Kenya was the first country to ratify UNCAC which came into force in 2005 and during this year’s celebrations the country launched the 20th UNCAC Anniversary campaign.

The event, organized by the Kenya Leadership Integrity Forum (KLIF) and the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC), brought together various government agencies, private sector, civil society organizations and development partners.

“As the world unites in the fight against corruption, Kenya recognizes the importance of international cooperation in the investigation and prosecution of anti-corruption cases and in tracing, seizure and return of corruptly acquired assets. Kenya has and shall continue to take deliberate steps aimed at fostering strategic partnerships with other states and with the international community to leverage on international cooperation as the world unites in the fight against graft,” said Attorney-General Honourable Justin B. Muturi , EGH who was the chief guest.

He also lauded the role of public participation in implementing anti-corruption laws, policies and administrative procedures.

Other government agencies represented included the Office of the Auditor General, the National Assembly, various county governments and constitutional commissions, and the private sector. Private Sector representation was led by the Blue Company Initiative Secretariat, an Eastern African business platform committed to supporting clean business in the region.

Over the years, UNODC has worked with Kenya’s parliamentarians, the private sector, academia, and justice sector actors such as EACC to build institutional capacity and promote the development of relevant legislative and policy anti-corruption initiatives.

Between June and August 2022, with the technical support of UNODC, Kenya’s National Council on the Administration of Justice Committee on Anti-Corruption identified and created a repository on previous reports and research on Anti-Corruption work in the Justice Sector. This is the first step in a series of activities by the sector aimed at understanding thematic areas prone to corruption, identifying the anti-corruption bottlenecks, and making appropriate recommendations to promote more effective and efficient approaches in fighting corruption.

Corruption poses significant threats to countries around the world; it weakens institutions, erodes trust, and threatens the economy by undermining fair competition and discouraging investment and trade. It is arguably the most significant challenge to achieve sustainable development in Kenya.

It is a key reason for economic underperformance and a major obstacle to alleviating poverty. It also affects inclusive growth, the effectiveness of poverty reduction programmes, the protection of fundamental rights to liberty and security, and equal access to public services. Addressing corruption would therefore be a great start in promoting better livelihoods in Kenya.

UNODC will continue to support government efforts to investigate and prosecute corruption cases and ensure that institutions work shoulder to shoulder to bring such cases to a successful conclusion.

UNODC is the custodian of the United Nations Convention Against Corruption and hosts the secretariat of the Conference of State Parties to the convention.


More information

UNODC Eastern Africa, Crime Prevention, Criminal Justice and Anti-Corruption Pillar -