Donor Agencies Perpetuating Poverty and Impunity

Published on 15th May 2009

The World Bank's report that Kenya’s poor will become even poorer, and its subsequent  offer of Ksh. 33 billion in spite of  an attempted Ksh 9.2 billion fraud in the name of  a “computer error” is to say the least, fraud on the Kenyan people by both the World Bank and a clique in Government. It is now evident that our worst enemies are two: our own government and international donors who have conspired to keep the third world countries poor in an arrangement of "scratch my back I scratch yours."

As the World Bank was releasing this report, they were giving the Minster for Finance Uhuru Kenyatta some Kshs 33 billion amidst an alleged attempted pilfering of Kshs 9.2 billion by the treasury. How serious are institutions like the World Bank on issues of corruption, bad governance and impunity?

How can the World Bank preach International Best Practices but advance money to a Finance Minister who explains Ksh 9.2 Billion fraud in over 211 entries in the Supplementary Budget as a small error? What credibility does this bring to the officials of the World Bank? How certain are they that the Ksh. 33 Billion will be "budgeted" appropriately by one who cannot estimate Ksh 9.2 Billion correctly?

It makes some of us to ask; where is the evidence of the Kshs 1 trillion that Kenya has borrowed in the last 46 years? If we combine the Grants and the Loans that we have borrowed, surely, can we still be this badly off? Why do donor agencies give Kenya more money when we cannot justify how we have used what we were given before?

How can the World Bank give Uhuru Kshs 33 billion at a time questions are being raised about his competence at the crucial Ministry of Finance?  Time has come for Kenyans to scrutinize the intentions of donors who keep giving money to our thieving government officials.

We have had financial scandals at Kenya Airports Authority but instead of the Managing Director being sent packing; he was given a new mandate. At the Kenya Pipeline Company Ltd and Kenya Tourism Board, the MDs have been sent home and taken to court. Isn't this selective justice? The victims are being used as a smokescreen to convince gullible donors that the government is doing something about corruption. As the government engages Mr. George Okungu, Mr. Achieng Ongong’a and Ms Rebeca Nabutola in their Public Relations, mega scandals go unabated in institutions headed by the home boys.
Giving Kenya more money amidst scandal after scandal means that the donor community could be abetting corruption at the top level as they give a clean bill of health to bad governance and ineptness that we experience. The World Bank is therefore becoming part of a bigger scam to rob poor Africans and third world countries in cohorts with their very own governments. The Bank then, to justify its lending and  "scare" the poor people of Kenya, "projects" that poverty is bound to rise and the poor become even "poorer.

Kenya did without loans from the World Bank between 2003-2007 and basically sustained it's own budget from tax payers. The Ksh 9.2 billion factored way above the supplementary budgets implies a good forensic audit would reveal even more figures that could be saved to plug the deficits we face.

The bottom line is clear; the loans that we have borrowed as a country and the grants that we have been given have been eaten by the government officials in connivance with the same Donors. That is why they keep giving us more money.

The World bank should not promote the theft that they have perfected with governments across the world where the poor nations are made to pay for "loans and grants" from rich nations in a shylock-type relationship that they have perfected, breaking the back of Africa to sustain the rich nations.

Odhiambo T Oketch,
Komarock Nairobi.



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