A damning dossier allegedly leaked by senior government officials against Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed signals the behind–the-scenes intrigues that made the government to decide to ‘release’ the CS from government by fronting her for the African Union post.
The dossier also reveals the deep rot at National Bank of Kenya, largely owned by Kenyan workers through the National Social Security Fund (NSSF).
A petition sent to Parliament mid-December last year alleges that Amina is part of a cartel undermining the National Bank of Kenya.
Last week, The Kenyan Weekly exclusively reported about the explosive dossier that may put roadblocks in Amina’s path to becoming African Union chair, a week before the continent’s historic vote.
NSSF has a 48.05 per cent stake in NBK while the Government owns 22.5 per cent of the shares.
It is alleged that soon after taking office as CS Amina took unsecured loan of Sh98, 500, 000 from NBK which she withdrew over the counter on October 7, 2013 through customer number 0876261.
This was just two days after obtaining the loan approval.
“And on October 9, 2013, Ambassador Amina transferred Sh95, 000,000 by SWIFT, to the bank account of a company, Paddock Investment Ltd, A/C NO. 7040540028 with Commercial Bank of Africa,” the petition that has stirred anxiety in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs reads in part.
According to the dossier, Paddock Investment Limited is suspected to be owned by Amina’s brother, Ahmed Rashid Jibril, an aviation tycoon who also owns 748 Air Services Ltd, a private jet firm.
Jibril is said to have a posh residence in Ontario, Canada.
“It’s highly suspected that CS Amina is not up to date with payment of the loan with the National Bank of Kenya. She would thus effectively be part of the cartel known to have destabilised the National Bank of Kenya,” the petition states.
Today, NBK is precariously standing on non-performing loan portfolio estimated at Sh15 billion.
Incidentally, Munir and five top managers were sent on forced leave last year to pave way for a detailed audit.
The Bank then appointed Wilfred Musau as acting CEO.
In July last year, Munir was arrested at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport on suspicion that he was fleeing the country.
He was later released without any charges preferred against him after spending the night at Kileleshwa Police Station cells.
The dossier alleges that from their vantage position, members of the cartel, largely wealthy and influential Somalis, obtained large unsecured loans which they withdrew in total over the counter.
The large cash from NBK would then be used in money laundering and financing illegal importation of sugar.
“Credible evidence of such activities compelled the Governor of the Central Bank of Kenya to cancel operating licences of a number of the suspects money transfer companies, known as Hawalla, that are part of the cartel,” the petition says.
The toxic loans that NBK is holding could leave it exposed at a time when three banks have already collapsed in the country, sinking with billions of Kenyans’ hard-earned investments.
Dubai Bank, Imperial Bank and Chase Bank were put under statutory management last year.
Mid last year, NBK warned that due to non-performing loan portfolio, its full year 2016 results would dip by at least a quarter.
This is a pointer to the massive rot in the financial institution.
In 2015, Treasury Principal Secretary Kamau Thugge asked the bank to liaise with the Privatization Commission to conduct investigation into the bank’s activities.
But the latest dossier which pieces intricate graft network in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs could irredeemably damage Amina’s reputation if proven, even if elected AU chair.
It alleges for instance that the ministry has on numerous occasions hired private jets at exaggerated prices from 748 Air Services Ltd, a firm owned by Jibril, Amina’s brother.
“Since 2013, the ministry has procured private jets for use by the CS more frequently than usual through single sourcing…The company which is based at JKIA is owned by its founder, Ahmed Rashid Jibril, a brother of CS Amina Mohamed,” the voluminous petition reads in part.
The petitioner claims it’s possible the jets recently chartered for Deputy President William Ruto for Amina’s pan-African campaign could have been procured from the same firm. Top Jubilee leaders including cabinet ministers have been flying across the continent, marketing Amina’s bid for AU chair for the elections scheduled for January 31, 2017.
In fact, the petition alleges that President Uhuru Kenyatta could secretly be edging out Amina in fear of out rightly kicking her out and losing the critical Somali vote.
This article first appeared on The Kenyan Weekly news website.