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KRA invites EACC to probe BAT bribes allegations

KRA will work with the anti-graft agency to ensure full and proper details are availed in a probe into the BAT scandal.

Commissioner general John Njiraini said the Authority held discussions with EACC after media reports highlighted “alleged unethical relations between staff of BAT and unspecified staff at KRA”.

“We shall work with EACC to ensure full and proper details are availed and support further investigatory work as required,” he said.

KRA was mentioned in the controversial BAT scam after one of its employees, Mary M’Mukindia, was claimed to have been the conduit for a Sh7.5 million alleged bribe paid to Narc-Kenya leader Martha Karua presidential campaign.

Karua has denied the allegations.

The Authority refuted claims M’Mukindia was their employee.

The Commissioner general said they contacted Paul Hopkins, who was allegedly used by BAT to pay Karua, seeking information on the claims and the identities of those involved.

“The authority has contacted the BBC, who assisted by providing Paul Hopkins contacts, the key person behind the allegations,” Njiraini said in a statement on Tuesday.

“Mr Hopkins responded indicating his preference to avail the information to an independent third party,” Njiraini said.

The commissioner further said they contacted EACC seeking to hand over Hopkins’ contacts for investigations.

He said UK’s Serious Fraud Office had offered to assist with the securing the information required.

“The Fraud office is keen to work with the commission in addressing high range motor vehicle smuggling as evidenced by recent interceptions at the Port of Mombasa,” he said.

In regard to allegations that BAT sought “to obtain confidential KRA tender documents to assist in their bidding”, Njiraini said the Authority was “not aware of any attempts made by BAT to influence past tendering processes”.

“BAT Kenya, as an entity, has not tendered for the supply of Excise Tax Stamps, in any of the tenders floated by KRA in the past,” he said.

“The present tender for the supply of Stamps and related management systems was awarded to SICPA Security Solutions, SA in December 2012, who emerged the winner out of 21 bidders.”

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