Reconsider charging me:KRA border and customs control commissioner writes to DPP

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Commissioner of Customs & Border Control of the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA), Kevin Safari Lewis has written to the Director of Public Prosectutions Noordin Haji requesting him to reconsider charging him.

Through lawyer Danstun Omari, Safari says that he feels dissatisfied with the recommendation by the Directorate of Criminal investigations to have him charged for otherwise doing his job as the law requires.

“The thought that he presently faces imminent threat to his employment and reputation yet he has demonstrated unwavering commitment to the protection and promotion of public interest is at least unfortunate,” says Omari in the letter.

The Commissioner is facing allegation of unprocedural gazettement of the Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) Peripheral Storage Facilities (PSF).

The gazetted facilities are Mitchell Cotts Peripheral Storage Facility (PSF), Nairobi Inland Cargo Terminal peripheral Storage facility (NICT-PSF), and the Multiple Haulier Limited PSF.

He says in the letter that subsequent to the recommendation officers of the Customs & Border control Department (C&BC) of the KRA visited and inspected the three facilities and gave a clean bill of health to Mitchell Cotts Peripheral Storage Facility (PSF); Nairobi Inland Cargo Terminal peripheral Storage facility (NICT-PSF) and regrettably disqualifying Multiple Haulier Limited Peripheral Storage Facility (PSF).

“The gazettement of the two facilities was as a culmination of extensive deliberations, participation and involvement of the relevant stakeholders including the consideration of the views of the representative of Importers & Small traders Association of Kenya and Nairobi Importers & Small Traders Association, ” the Commissioner adds.

Addition of storage facilities was due to the increase in cargo to the Inland Container Depot Nairobi in the course of the year 2018 following the operationalization of the Standard Gauge Railway that significantly eased the movement of goods from the Kilindini Port, Mombasa to the ICDN.

According to Safari, KRA has not experienced any loss of revenue under his watch especially in view of the newly opened Peripheral Storage Facilities, which have in actual sense solved the previously predominant challenge amongst the small scale traders in Nyamakima, Gikomba and Kamukunji.

Omari states that relooking the matter will undeniably avert the now concerted attempts aimed at abusing the criminal justice system in order to cause his ouster or uncelebrated removal from office by some ill intended individual(s).

KPA Managing Director Daniel Manduku was arrested over the same issue of storage facility tender and produced in court but was not charged because his name did not appear in the charge sheet with the other accused persons.

This caused a star between the DPP, DCI and his lawyers which led the court to release Manduku.