Kenya has rejected fresh pressure from the United States to seize the properties of South Sudanese leaders that were allegedly bought with proceeds from corruption, money laundering and war profits.
Officials from Kenya’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs say the country is happy to share intelligence with the US on illicit money flows from South Sudan, but it must first establish mechanisms for verifying the reports provided by Washington DC.
According to Daily Nation, US Undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence at the Treasury Department, Sigal Mandelker, visited Uganda and Kenya and said that the two countries must seize proceeds of corruption from South Sudan’s war.
“Those who profit from human rights violations, corruption and preying on the poor, children and mothers are warned. We will impose consequences, cut off your access to the US financial systems, and we will work with our partners in this region and elsewhere to do the same,” Ms Mandelker said.
“The message to the regional financial sector is similar. It is imperative that you work on internal controls to keep the actors from abusing your systems and continuing to profit through access to international financial systems.”
Foreign Affairs Principal Secretary Macharia Kamau said Kenya is capable of seizing properties from illicit proceeds but will only act within the context of international practices through the United Nations conventions and the Bretton Woods institutions.
“Kenya knows its obligations in regards to corruption and money laundering, and is working closely with the international community on the same. However, we work with multilateral platforms and don’t take instructions from other sovereign states.”
Mr Kamau said.