A Multi-Agency Task Team (MATT) headed by Attorney General Paul Kihara has adopted a secretive strategy in the ongoing lifestyle audit.
It brings together several other investigative agencies that have been collecting information on the top Government officers and reports directly to President Uhuru Kenyatta.
The team meets every Tuesday and brings together the AG, National Intelligence Service (NIS), Director of Criminal Investigations, Anti-Money Laundering Unit, the Asset Recovery Agency, Banking Fraud Investigation unit, Financial Reporting Centre, Kenya Revenue Authority, Cyber-Crime Unit and Anti-Counterfeit Agency.
Around 1,000 public officers under investigation who include the officers suspended nearly 2 months ago have given an idea of how the lifestyle audit will be done. They have given the whole story from how one is picked up till they are delivered to highly secure residences, where the panel of interrogators operate from.
Those who have tested the grilling say an individual is called and asked to report to a specific place only with his/her national identity card.
After arriving at the designated place, the individual is directed to a waiting car, which then takes them to a private residence for grilling.
Reports say that he team is operating from several highly secured houses in different classic estates.
The houses are very well-maintained and do not appear to be inhabited .
At the residence, the individual meets a panel that introduces itself before sitting to commence the interrogation.
One of those who were grilled said,“You are asked to give a brief introduction and your background before being taken through the main interview. The stage involves being asked to state what you own and how you acquired it. You are also asked to declare what your close family members own on your behalf.”
If someone gives information that has differs from what is contained in their file, the individual is taken to a different house, where he/she is put through a polygraph test.
A polygraph (a lie detector) measures and records several physiological signs such as blood pressure, pulse, respiration, and skin conductivity while a person is asked and answers a series of questions.
So dreadful is the operation that some of those who have undergone the exercise are reportedly contemplating resigning altogether. There are reports that principal secretaries and parastatal chiefs who will also undergo the same test at a later stage have panicked after hearing about the experiences of their juniors.
It is being reported that National Intelligence Service has secretly compiled a report on each of the top government officials, beginning with the procurement and finance officers.
It is said that the NIS has been doing so for the one year now and they were given the task by their boss Philip Kameru.
The information they have collected for that period of time will be used as part of the investigation on the lifestyle audit.
President Kenyatta on June 1, during Madaraka celebrations directed all senior Government officials to be asked to explain their sources of wealth and he promised to be the first one then his deputy William Ruto then others will follow.
The team has received the polygraph machines from one of the security agencies involved in covert operations.
One person said that they suspect the same agency owns those houses going by the level of security and secrecy and the team’s records are so up to date such that they even remind you of that old asset you had forgotten.
The President said all public servants will be asked to explain the source of their wealth and all those found to have plundered public coffers will be put to task to explain the source of their wealth.
“You must be able to explain how you got your car, your house and land in comparison to what you earn,” said the President, who spoke after he launched the Miritini Mwache Kipevu link road.
The President said the lifestyle audit will be key amongst other measures put in place by the Government to curb the vice.
“Transparency is when all those in authority declare what they own and how they got their property,” said President Kenyatta.
On Wednesday, June 9, the President issued an Executive Order requiring all government entities and public owned institutions to publish full details of tenders and awards from the 1st of July 2018.
The publication will allow members of the public to access the information including details of the items or services purchased, contract prices, and the particulars of the suppliers including owners, directors and beneficial ownership.
On Madaraka Day, President Kenyatta ordered that all heads of procurement and accounting units to be vetted afresh. He said the vetting will include subjecting the officers to polygraph tests to determine integrity.
The President said the war on graft will continue and no one will be allowed to politicise it.
“Corruption must end and those trying to politicise the issue will not succeed. A thief is a thief, he has no tribe. You cannot use your tribe to shield and justify yourself. We cannot afford to trivialise graft by politicking ,” said the President.
He said the Government would continue introducing new measures to ensure public servants to give Kenyans value for their money.
The exercise has been criticized by many leaders especially DP Ruto’s allies saying it is a plan of preventing him from succeeding President Kenyatta.
A level had reached such that they had threatened to come with their own Party and quit Jubilee.
Later the Rift Valley leaders sat down and decided to bury their differences and promised to support the president and DP in achieving the Big 4 Agenda.
Other leaders have been saying the audit to start in 1963.
Other leaders have vowed to support Kenyatta in his fight against corruption and some like ODM Leader Raila Odinga and WIPER leader Stephen Kalonzo Musyoka promised to be among the 1st ones in doing what Kenyatta said.