US imposes travel bans on Kenyan officials

GODEC 0807AThe United States has slapped visa bans on Kenyans who have been implicated in corruption.

Ambassador Robert Godec Monday said his country made the decision to support President Uhuru Kenyatta’s efforts in fighting the vice.

Mr Godec spoke during preparations for World Aids Day, to be marked Tuesday.

“There are individuals who cannot go to the US as a consequence of their involvement in corruption,” said Mr Godec.

He, however, did not reveal names or the number of people who have been restricted from visiting America.

“I will not go into specifics or names right now, but the US is obviously committed to doing everything it can to support the fight against corruption,” said Mr Godec.

The ambassador said corruption had become a scourge in the country and should be fought by all Kenyans.

“We welcome President Kenyatta’s commitment to the many activities he is undertaking to fight corruption,” he said.

Several Cabinet secretaries in the Jubilee administration have been asked to step aside to pave the way for investigations into corruption allegations in their ministries.

They are Mrs Charity Ngilu (Land), Mr Kazungu Kambi (Labour), Mr Michael Kamau (Transport and Infrastructure), Mr Davis Chirchir (Energy) and Mr Felix Koskei (Agriculture).

Mr Godec’s announcement comes after Western diplomats recently warned that any public officer linked to corruption risked sanctions, including travel bans.

Apart from the US, nine other countries on November 11 also said they would impose travel restrictions on officials linked to corruption.

These were the United Kingdom, Canada, Finland, Germany, Japan, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and Switzerland.

During the tenure of the Grand Coalition, Western envoys imposed restrictions on top Kenyan officials implicated in corruption by denying them visas.

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