Effect of Leadership Independence on Perceived Levels of Corruption in the Procurement Department in the Judiciary of Kenya





Corruption, Government, Independence, Leadership, Procurement


Corruption is a major obstacle to the development of any nation because it distorts markets, encourages crime, discourages investment, creates inequality, and destroys values. The aim of this study was to examine the effects of leadership independence on perceived levels of corruption in procurement departments in the judiciary of Kenya. It utilized the concurrent triangulation design and targeted the population of 278 heads of procurement committees in 278 court stations of the Kenyan judiciary and key informants from six oversight organizations. From this population, a sample of 164 heads of procurement committees was selected using the stratified proportionate random sampling technique, while 12 key informants were selected purposefully. Quantitative data was collected from the heads of procurement committees using questionnaires, while qualitative data was collected by interviewing 12 key informants. Quantitative data was analyzed using descriptive statistics as well as cross-tabulation with the chi-square method. Qualitative data was analyzed using thematic content analysis and presented using illustrative quotes. The study found leadership independence has a statistically significant and negative effect on levels of corruption in the procurement departments in the Kenyan judiciary (chi-square (X2) = 63.384, df = 2, sig. =.000). Based on the findings, the study concludes that leadership independence reduces levels of corruption in government procurement. It recommends the formulation of laws, policies, and strategies aimed at improving the independence of leaders in government procurement departments.


Abdou, A., Basdevant, O., Barrett, E., & Fazekas, M. (2022). Assessing vulnerabilities to corruption in public procurement and their price impact. IMF Working Papers, 2022(094), 31. DOI: 10.5089/9798400207884.001

https://doi.org/10.5089/9798400207884.001 DOI: https://doi.org/10.5089/9798400207884.001

Adera, W., & Senelwa, A. (2019). Effect of procurement training practices on implementation of procurement practices in public institutions. International Journal of Social Sciences and Information Technology, 4(12), 1-9.

AfriMAP. (2015). Effectiveness of anti-corruption agencies in East Africa: Kenya, Tanzania, and Uganda. New York, NY: AfriMAP.

Bandiera, O., Best, M., Khan, A., & Prat, A. (2017). Motivating bureaucrats: Autonomy versus performance pay for public procurement in Pakistan. London: International Growth Centre.

Barrett, E., & Fazekas, M. (2020). Grand corruption and government change: An analysis of partisan favoritism in public procurement. European Journal of Criminal Policy and Research, 26, 411-430. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10610-019-09416-4 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10610-019-09416-4

Downe, J., Cowell, R., & Morgan, K. (2016). What determines ethical behavior in public organizations: Is it rules or leadership? Public Administration Review, 76(6), 898-909. https://doi.org/10.1111/puar.12562 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/puar.12562

EACC. (2015). An evaluation of corruption in public procurement: A Kenyan experience. Nairobi: Government Printer.

Fazekas, M., & Blum, J. (2021). Improving public procurement outcomes: Review of tools and the state of the evidence base. New York, NY: World Bank Group. https://doi.org/10.1596/1813-9450-9690 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1596/1813-9450-9690

Government of Kenya. (2020). The public procurement and asset disposal regulations, 2020. Nairobi: Government Printer.

Graycar, A. (2022). Corrupt procurement: Rethinking the roles of principals and agents. Policy Design and Practice, 5(3), 276-293. https://doi.org/10.1080/25741292.2022.2113461 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/25741292.2022.2113461

Gros, M., & Henke, T. (2019). The association among corporate governance, corruption, and economic prosperity in the socialist republic of Vietnam. Accounting, Economics, and Law, 12(1), 26-75. https://doi.org/10.1515/ael-2018-0020 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/ael-2018-0020

Halonen, K. (2016). Disclosure rules in EU public procurement: Balancing between competition and transparency. Journal of Public Procurement, 16(4), 528-553. https://doi.org/10.1108/JOPP-16-04-2016-B005 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1108/JOPP-16-04-2016-B005

Handoko, B., & Pamungkas, H. (2020). Effect of independence, time budget pressure, and auditor ethics on audit quality. International Journal of Psychosocial Rehabilitation, 24(9), 1-6.

Ibironke, E. (2019). Effect of internal audit quality on corruption in Nigeria public sector. Amity Journal of Corporate Governance, 4(1), 1-14.

Jarso, J. (2010). The media and the anti-corruption crusade in Kenya: Weighing the achievements, challenges, and prospects. American University International Law Review, 26(1), 33-88.

Jha, C., & Sarangi, S. (2018). Women and corruption: What positions must they hold to make a difference? Journal of Economic Behaviour & Organization, 151, 219-233. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jebo.2018.03.021 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jebo.2018.03.021

Johnson, R., Waal, C., Stefurak, T., & Hildebrand, D. (2017). Understanding the philosophical positions of classical and neopragmatists for mixed methods research. Cologne Journal for Social Psychology, 69(2), 63-86. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11577-017-0452-3 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s11577-017-0452-3

Judiciary of Kenya. (2023). Supply chain management services directorate. Nairobi: Government Printer.

Kamau, P., Onyango, G., & Salau, T. (2022). Kenyans cite criminal activity, lack of respect, and corruption among police failings. Acra: Afrobarometer.

Kanyaru, G., & Moronge, M. (2017). Determinants of public procurement legal framework on the performance of public institutions in Kenya: A case of Judicial Service Commission. The Strategic Journal of Business & Change Management, 4(3), 148-163. https://doi.org/10.61426/sjbcm.v4i3.499 DOI: https://doi.org/10.61426/sjbcm.v4i3.499

Kimemia, D. (2013). Perception of public corruption in Kenya. African Journal of Governance and Development, 2(2), 55-71.

Mariz, C., Menard, C., & Abeille, B. (2014). Public procurement reforms in Africa: Challenges in Institutions and Government. New York, NY: Oxford Press. https://doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198714910.001.0001 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198714910.001.0001

Mesa, R. (2018). Determinants of procurement performance in judiciary department at the Nakuru law courts, Kenya (Master's Thesis, Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology, Kenya).

Mwithi, K. (2017). Mitigating corruption in the Kenyan judiciary: A case study of the legal and administrative anti-corruption framework (Thesis, Strathmore University, Kenya).

Njeri, W., & Getuno, P. (2016). Determinants for youth access to government procurement opportunities in Kenya: A case of judiciary. International Journal of Innovative Social Sciences & Humanities Research, 4(3), 31-49.

Ntayi, J., Ngoboka, P., & Kakooza, C. (2013). Moral schemas and corruption in Ugandan public procurement. Journal of Business Ethics, 112(2013), 417-436. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10551-012-1269-7 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10551-012-1269-7

OECD. (2016). Preventing corruption in public procurement. Paris: OECD.

Okello, J., Bowa, O., & Migotsi, J. (2021). Project delivery systems, procurement practices and implementation of building construction projects in the Kenyan judiciary. Civil and Environmental Research, 13(6), 26-38.

Onyango, C. (2018). Effects of procurement planning on institutional performance: A case study of Mombasa Law Court. International Journal of Science and Research, 3(10), 2389-2408.

Pimenta, C., & Rezai, N. (2015). Public Procurement in Latin America. In C. Pimenta & M. Pressoa (Eds.), Public Financial Management in Latin America (pp. 323-372). Washington, DC: Inter-American Development Bank.

Tahir, F., Idris, K., & Ariffin, Z. (2014). Dimensions of auditor independence: A pilot study. International Journal of Business and Management, 9(6), 72-76. https://doi.org/10.5539/ijbm.v9n6p72 DOI: https://doi.org/10.5539/ijbm.v9n6p72

Taiye, A. (2009). Gender and corruption: Insights from Nigeria democracy. African Research Review, 3(4), 1-12.

https://doi.org/10.4314/afrrev.v3i4.47543 DOI: https://doi.org/10.4314/afrrev.v3i4.47543

Transparency International. (2010). Corruption Perception Index 2010. Berlin: Transparency International.

Yamane, T. (1973). Statistics: An Introductory Analysis (3rd Edition). Harper and Row, New York.




How to Cite

Ndururu, V., Gesimba, P., & Muasya, D. (2023). Effect of Leadership Independence on Perceived Levels of Corruption in the Procurement Department in the Judiciary of Kenya. African Journal of Empirical Research, 4(2), 536–545. https://doi.org/10.51867/ajernet.4.2.55