Those who still harboured any hopes that the Government of Kenya prudently used the proceeds of Eurobond money and will fully account for it to our citizens must now burry those hopes. After many twists and turns, the Central Bank of Kenya yesterday declared that the information and documents it holds in relation to the Eurobond is privileged and cannot be disclosed to third parties.
We, Kenyans have suddenly become third parties in the case of money borrowed in our name to be paid by all of us, our children and our grandchildren. But it is the final realisation that the money is lost which must concern us. Everything points to that.
We have been on the trail of this money since last year when we wrote to the PS and CS Treasury asking for information on how the money was spent. We were told the National Government had set up a desk at the National Treasury where all information regarding the loan was readily available. It turned out no such desk existed.
Then Kenyans were told that all the proceeds of Eurobond were put in infrastructure projects that the government would make public in three months. It never happened.
Next we were told the money got lumped with those from other sources and used to finance public infrastructure projects and it was not possible to pinpoint which money funded which project.
Then the government embarked on an elaborate campaign with the support of the private sector, spearheaded by the Kenya Bankers Association writing lengthy columns in the national dailies on how all the Eurobond money had been accounted for.
Two weeks ago, in another twist, the National Treasury CS Mr Henry Rotich disclosed that all the proceeds of Eurobond were used to settle debts incurred by the Grand Coalition Government.
At around the same time, we established authoritatively that the Government had equally misled the International Monetary Fund on the proceeds and use of the proceeds of Eurobond. We wrote to the IMF seeking clarity. We attach that letter to the IMF.
It is this ever changing and conflicting position of the government that compelled us to write to the Governor of the Central Bank of Kenya in the belief that he would have the final word and the duty to share it with the public on this money.
Yesterday, to our dismay, in response to our request, the governor declared and we quote him:
“The information and documents held by the CBK in relation to the Eurobond is privileged under the banking laws, and therefore cannot be disclosed to third parties.”
The information we had sought from the CBK is attached here.
We wish to state that CBK is a State organ. The Governor of the CBK is a State officer.
The money that the CBK banks belongs to the people of Kenya. It is the people of Kenya, not the government, who are the clients of the bank. The government is the manager of the people’s money. CBK cannot justifiably and legally erect a wall of privilege against the owner of the money; the people of the Republic of Kenya.
A matter of grave concern to us is how the CBK has chosen to operate without a Board. Under the CBK Act, the Board of Directors is obligated to determine the policy of the bank and keep in constant review the performance of the Governor. Yet for over two years, the CBK has not had a full Board.
The Governor is operating under the policy direction of the chairman, Mr Mohammed Nyaoga and the Principal Secretary to the Treasury Dr Kamau Thugge, who are the only members of the Board.
This is the reason there is so much confusion at the CBK.
How does the CBK say it has a policy to keep public information confidential when the Constitution is clear that the information must be published and publicised? Section 35 of our Constitution guarantees, among other things that:
1) Every citizen has the right of access to information held by the State; and
(2) The State shall publish and publicise any important information affecting the nation.
At the start of our search for the truth on Eurobond, we made a commitment to the people of Kenya and we reiterate that commitment today. We shall not rest until we get to the bottom of the Eurobond saga which we maintain, is a case of grand robbery against the suffering people of Kenya.
Until the Government proves otherwise, we maintain that Eurobond money was raised abroad and stolen abroad. All that the government brought home was the debt.
We are not letting this matter go. We are exploring many options to help us get to the truth.
For a start, we shall therefore be writing to the Chairman of the CBK seeking to know how he came to give such a policy directive to the governor against the Constitution of Kenya.
We are witnessing the subversion of the People’s Constitution. The Chairman of the Board must explain this treasonable position by a State organ. And we will demand punishment fitting this crime.