Election bribery causing bank note shortage – minister

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A Kenyan minister has said that the shortage of 100 ($0.84; £0.69) and 200-shilling notes at the banks is down to politicians using the cash to bribe voters ahead of next month’s elections.

“You have seen people who are carrying money in bags, lining up citizens, giving them 200 bob (shillings),” Interior Minister Fred Matiang’i is quoted by AFP news agency as saying.

“People are not working. They are standing on the roadside just to get 200 shillings from all these money launderers.”

The minister also warned that the next parliament could be captured by individuals involved in economic crimes if they are allowed to use dirty money to buy their way to victory.

Speaking at a meeting on money laundering and terrorism financing on Wednesday, Dr Matiang’i said such a move could undermine the war against corruption.

He said individuals involved in money laundering and dealers in fake cash could influence the country’s laws to protect themselves if elected.

Elections in Kenya are often driven by personalities and money more than ideologies, and this year’s election is no different.

On 9 August, Kenyans will be electing a new president, parliament and country administrations.

The political campaigns have been characterised by opulence raising questions about the source of funding.

READ ALSO:  Kenya’s former President Daniel arap Moi dies aged 95

Kenyan politicians shot down an earlier proposal by the electoral commission to cap election spending on election for presidential campaigns at $40m.

A report that was launched on Wednesday cited fraud and forgery as the leading financial crimes in Kenya.

Experts say money launderers and other criminals are exploiting the country’s weak regulatory framework to sponsor or fund campaigns posing a threat to the credibility of the August elections.

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