The Authority is committed to ensuring zero tolerance to corruption hence we have put in place measures to curb corruption and promote integrity as enshrined in our value system. It is on this back drop that we have developed the Authority’s Anti-corruption policy whose main objective is to provide a framework to combat corruption and unethical conduct. The policy will further lay a firm foundation that will develop a culture of accountability and transparency through development of procedures of managing corruption risks at the Authority.
The Public Service Commission (PSC) in conjunction with the State Corporation Advisory Committee (SCAC) issued the code of Governance for State Corporations; Mwongozo Code in 2015 to guide operations of State Corporations. The Mwongozo Code advocates for ethical leadership, best practices in Corporate Governance and prudent management of public resources.
The Authority has the core mandate to “Undertake on behalf of the national government, the development of national public water works for water resources storage and flood control.” In this respect, the Authority recognizes that corruption can adversely affect its performance and ultimately its reputation. This therefore calls for transparent implementation of projects while ensuring value for money.
While the government has initiated various reforms to curb corruption in the country, there is need for concerted efforts to ensure success. Article five of The United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC) recognizes the core principles associated with the prevention of corruption in the public sector i.e. the rule of law, proper management of public affairs and public property, integrity, transparency and accountability.
This policy will supplement the existing legal provisions and other government initiatives for fighting and preventing corruption in Kenya. The Authority also believes that existence of a good regulatory framework provides a sound structure for the Management of public resources as entrenched in the Public Finance Management Act, 2012. (PFM Act, 2012)
The Ag. Chief Executive Officer CS. Sharon Obonyo says that the Authority is committed to ensuring integrity and accountability is restored and sustained. Management through the leadership of the Board has ensured that this policy is formulated hence it shall apply the same enthusiasm in its implementation. Most importantly, management will ensure all stakeholders have been sensitized on corruption prevention mechanisms through a participatory approach so as to ensure effective and efficient implementation of the policy.
The CEO thanked everyone who participated in the development of the policy noting that the teams worked jointly in its development and expects compliance with all its provisions and procedures.
The Anti-corruption policy outlines the principles that the Authority and its regions collectively shall follow to achieve zero tolerance against corruption. The objective of this policy is to ensure that appropriate Anti-Corruption procedures are put in place across the Authority to avoid any violations of relevant laws and regulations pertaining to corruption prevention.
This policy applies to all officers, Board of Directors and third parties in all aspects of the operations of the Authority. Violation of this policy will be sanctioned including where appropriate disciplinary procedures up to and including termination of employment and possible referral to the appropriate criminal or regulatory authorities. The Authority is committed to doing business with institutions that do not condone corruption.
National values and principles of good governance are enshrined in the Constitution of Kenya, 2010 Article 10. Similarly, Chapter 6 on leadership and integrity expects all public officers and public entities to ensure personal integrity, competence, suitability, fairness, objectivity and accountability.
The Government developed the National Ethics and Anti-corruption policy in 2018 which is anchored on the political pillar of Vision 2030. Public institutions were expected to develop tailor made Anti-corruption policies within their Organizations.
It is on this premise that the Authority has developed this Anti-corruption policy to act as an internal framework on matters corruption prevention while reducing levels of corruption prevalence and unethical practices within the Authority.
Corruption risk assessment and management is an essential part of an organization’s corruption prevention strategy. It is the process of determining an organization’s exposure to the threat of corruption and proposing mitigation measures aimed at eliminating the threat. The Corruption Prevention Committee shall therefore formulate and implement a comprehensive Corruption Prevention Plan (CPP) in line with this policy.
The Authority’s leadership will be at the forefront in championing for corruption prevention within and outside the Authority through intense creation of awareness among staff and its stakeholders. NWHSA’s Anti-Corruption Policy has been developed to govern corruption prevention, detection and response in the Authority.
The Authority will perform annual corruption risk assessment to create awareness on combating corruption among staff and stakeholders to foster an organizational culture in which corruption is not tolerated. Further the Authority will ensure that all its stakeholders are made aware of the existence of the Anti-corruption policy.
Through the Anti-Corruption Policy, the Authority stands to benefit in fighting the vice by receiving corruption related information from the stakeholders. The policy therefore aims to minimize and ultimately eradicate corruption within the Authority.
Written by CPA Philip Nzengu
Chief Internal Auditor
5th July, 2021