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I am not a Somali citizen, Duale says amid dual citizenship probe

Friday October 4, 2019

Naional Assembly Majority Leader Aden Duale.Image: FILE
Naional Assembly Majority Leader Aden Duale.Image: FILE

National Assembly Majority leader has dismissed claims that he holds both Somali and Kenyan citizenship.

Duale on Thursday said he has never held citizenship of another country and never will.

This comes after EACC launched investigations into claims that several public officers hold dual citizenship, thus contravening the Leadership and Integrity Act.

EACC chief executive Twalib Mbarak said the commission would take action, including mechanisms of removal from office of such officers if found guilty.

But Duale said, “It is a matter of public notoriety that I am a proud Kenyan citizen and I do not hold dual citizenship and I have never held citizenship of another country and will never do. Mimi ni Mkenya kwa damu na daima nitazidi kuwa Mkenya (I'm Kenyan in the blood and will always be Kenyan)”.

Duale said he was being blackmailed by those he termed ‘busybodies’ after he refused to facilitate the approval of Mwende Mwinzi for appointment as the Ambassador to South Korea.

He said he has been receiving numerous calls to try help Mwinzi, but maintained his stand on the guidelines stipulated in the Constitution.

“Parliament shall not be arm twisted or blackmailed,” Duale wrote on his Twitter page.

He added, “ Indeed the so-called public interest litigators should have looked for other "clever" ways of arm twisting Parliament. This one falls flat like a flat tyre”.

Duale said "such blackmail is  laughable, a total shame, fake and requires to be treated just as such - total fabrications, generous with falsehoods and economical with truths".

He said on June 6,  the Departmental Committee on Defence and Foreign Relations of the National Assembly  tabled a report approving six nominees and put a condition on seventh nominee  Mwende Mwinzi for appointment as the Ambassador to South Korea subject to upon appointment and before taking office, renounce her American citizenship in line with section 31 of the Leadership and Integrity Act.

The legislator said the arguments of whether an ambassador is a public officer or state officer are 'neither here nor there'.

He argued that in good faith, the National Assembly approved Mwende Mwinzi for appointment hoping she will follow the requirements of the law and renounce her American citizenship.

“The Committee on Implementation of the National Assembly in seeking to establish the implementation status of the Defence and Foreign Relations Report has now established that upon approval by the House, Ms. Mwende Mwinzi in complete disregard of the law has acted in bad faith and refused and declined to renounce her American citizenship,” he said.

He said by EACC 'dancing to the tune of the so called public litigators, it  is just following in complete disregard of Article 249 of the Constitution that requires it to have its own mind and head and not to be subject to control by anyone'.

“Further, the public interest litigators have now even put a rope on EACC's neck and it's being pulled like a goat heading to the slaughter house that cannot bleat or even wag its tail. One wonders why EACC had to act only when the "public interest litigators" made allegations,” he said.

Duale said it is evident that EACC has fallen into the scheme of those trying to protect Mwinzi from renouncing her citizenship by doing one thing, alleging it is investigating others while not focusing on the obvious current matter.

“We are also aware the Presidency has also been misled so that it can be put in a collision course with Parliament and as a way of fighting back with the hope that the intimidation will yield fruits and consequently that we shall go slow on the implementation of Article 78(2) on the subject nominee,” he said.

Duale added, “Let me bring it out clear that we shall not. As Parliament, we shall follow the law. We shall ensure it’s implemented to the letter. Arm twisters and blackmailers we have decoded you. We shall follow what is right and lawful. After all, as Parliament we have an obligation to respect, uphold and defend the Constitution. This one we aren’t giving up soon. You can take this to the bank”.

Duale said there are many deserving Kenyans who can take up the job, including many patriotic career diplomats serving in the Public Service, locally and abroad.

“If one cannot bow down to the requirements of the Constitution so as to enjoy dual citizenship, then leave it for the rest of the deserving Kenyans to take up. The Constitution is what we follow and Parliament cannot be cowed to take a different trajectory,” Duale paused.