Kenyan embassy in America has been rocked by corruption allegations in the recent drive to issue Identity Cards to Kenyans living in America.
Ambassador Robinson Njeru Githae has come out to strongly deny the claims that appeared in a social media post that sparked a lot of conversations around the matter trending over the whole weekend.
The issuance of the IDs is supposed to cost $45 (sh4500) but according to the author of the post who did not reveal their identity, alleged that the embassy was charging as much as $150 (15000) for one to acquire the document.
The author continued to say that those living in Kansas had been asked to contribute to money to a tune of sh1.6 million to facilitate the embassy staff to conduct the drive in Kansas on 6th and 7th of October.
Revelations of the recent drive in Atlanta indicate that those who went to apply for the IDs were charged in excess of the normal rates but on questioning the embassy responded saying the money was a ‘service charge’.
It has emerged that embassy has partnered with some organizations to run the drive with Kenyan Parents in USA being one the entities involved in the Atlanta exercise.
Speaking during the Kenya Professors and Scholars (KESSA) conference in Atlanta, Amb. Githae termed the allegations as malicious and aimed at tarnishing his name and reputation of the Embassy.
“The information circulating around on social media has no basis in facts. The information has been manipulated to make it look like the embassy is charging more than its required when it comes to ID issuance but the reality is, the seemingly extra charges are those associated with logistics,’ said Mr. Githae.
Amb. Githae defended the embassy citing that by taking the service to the states was helping the people cut on costs incurred.
“It was a win-win situation for all because the Parents would save about $700-750 dollars which they have otherwise spent to travel to DC for ID registration while those without travel papers need not to travel outside their city or town while the Embassy would fulfill its mandate even under inadequate or insufficient budget circumstances,” noted Githae.
The envoy also explained that the exercise is quite expensive but promised the drive will continue as they await more funding from the Treasury.
“An ID registration exercise outside DC costs about $10,000 as the embassy has to cater for about 7-8 officers for 4 days with air tickets ,accommodation, food ,local transport, registration materials, out of pocket expenses and other allowances,” he said.
“If the diaspora cannot afford, for whatever reason ,to come to Washington DC to register for the documents, the Embassy will go to where the Kenyan Diaspora lives,” read a post on the Embassy website.