Accountability questions have been raised over how Kenya spent billions of shillings allocated to it by the United States towards fight against international crime.
America gave Kenya, Egypt and Colombia a combined Sh4.9 billion to boost their war against transnational crimes such as money laundering, wildlife poaching, drugs and arms trafficking, but US Government Accountability Office (GAO) in its 2017 report says that data given by the three countries’ on how they utilized the cash was “incomplete, nonstandard or inaccurate.”
The three countries received $49 million in the four-year period running to 2016 through the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement (INL).
“For example, INL did not provide democracy assistance data for Colombia, Egypt and Kenya until we identified these countries as potentially missing based on our comparison on INL data with USAid data,” the US accountability office said in its report to the Senate’s chairman of foreign relations committee.
“The initial data INL provided did not include records of awards for these countries because awards were miscoded when the data were entered; for example, some awards were coded under the broad category of law enforcement rather than under specific programme areas. According to INL officials, this erroneous law enforcement code was used for all of Colombia’s programs and for some programmes in other countries such as Egypt and Kenya.”
The INL is tasked with fighting global crime by providing financial and intelligence-gathering support to governments’ law enforcement agencies to counter transnational crimes.
Kenya is one of the countries that have been marked as trafficking hub for narcotics like heroin and cocaine after a series of seizures worth millions of dollars found in its territorial waters.
In 2014, an Australian Navy patrol boat nabbed heroin valued at $290 million (Sh29.2 billion) off Kenya’s Coast and another Sh1 billion haul impounded and destroyed in the same year.