Desperate to recover stolen wealth, President Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya has taken after President Muhammadu Buhari, clamouring for repatriation of loots stashed overseas. Buhari, African Union (AU) anti-corruption czar, has led the way for other African countries to fight corruption in its facets. Kenyatta and his visiting Swiss counterpart, Mr. Alain Berset on Monday in Nairobi oversaw the signing of an agreement that clears the way for the recovery of assets.
These assets were acquired through corruption and crime in Kenya, and stashed in foreign countries. The agreement, called a “Framework for the Return of Assets from Corruption and Crime in Kenya (FRACCK)”, is also supported by the United Kingdom and the Jersey Island. It would create a mechanism for Kenya to recover money stolen by corrupt individuals and hidden in the three countries – Switzerland, the United Kingdom and Jersey Island.
Kenyatta said the signing of the agreement at State House in Nairobi was part of his resolve to eliminate corruption in the country. The framework, which is in line with the United Nations Convention against Corruption, provides the principles to guide the recovery of stolen assets. “In the spirit of the Global Forum on Asset Recovery’s Principles for Disposition and Transfer of Confiscated Stolen Assets in Corruption Cases, returns should proceed in a transparent and accountable manner with the mutual consent of both Kenya and the partner offering the return,” said the new agreement .
To avoid complications of asset recovery, the framework says that recovery should follow executable judgments. A steering committee comprising the Executive Office of the President, the Attorney General, the National Treasury, the Assets Recovery Agency, Ethics and Anti-Corruption Agency and envoys or representatives representing the partner countries will be established to implement the deal. The agreement also has a provision to allow other nations willing to cooperate with Kenya in the recovery of stolen assets to join.
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