The Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) has cleared Mombasa Governor Ali Hassan Joho of graft claims over the alleged irregular allocation of a market and recommended closure of the file.
Also cleared were Mohammed Abdullah Zubedi and Abdulhakim Abdullah Zubedi who had been accused alongside Joho of participating in the irregular allocation of the Mwembe Tayari Market in Mombasa County to a private investor.
“EACC recommends that the file be closed for lack of evidence,” a statement from the commission said.
When he was grilled by the anti-graft agency in late April, Joho denied the allegations instead accused political rivals of being behind his woes.
He insisted he was not involved in the allocation of the market since the process was initiated and completed nearly 20 years ago before the system of devolved governments was in place.
“The market was allocated in 1996 and had nothing to do with us…I was a very young man at that time. There is nothing serious there. It is only a lease of the first floor of the market but the actual market still belongs to the County Government of Mombasa,” he said.
The Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions will now conduct an independent review of the file before giving its recommendations.
Joho was among the 12 Governors in the infamous ‘list of shame’ submitted to Parliament by President Uhuru Kenyatta.
He had even threatened to sue the corruption watchdog for defamation saying the public relations stunt by the Executive was ‘dragging’ his name in the mud yet he was innocent.
He however promised to cooperate with the commission until he cleared his name.