African Banking Corporation could be blacklisted over concerns that the bank could be a conduit for criminal activities, cnyakundi.com has learnt.
On February 13, the European Union published a list of countries whose banking systems have loopholes that could facilitate money laundering, illicit financial flows, terrorism financing and more importantly human trafficking.
Among the 23 countries blacklisted by the EU are six African states namely Botswana, Ethiopia, Ghana, Libya, Nigeria, and Tunisia.
Consequently, the European Union took a series of measures to protect its banking system, so that it would not be a conduit for serious international crime.
This shows how serious the war on illicit financial flows and terrorism is getting, as many banks aid these crimes.
A confidential exchange on August 4, between the Central Bank of Kenya and the United States Government with the subject: Bank Fraud & Money Laundering in the East African names ABC as a Kenyan bank that should be investigated for money laundering.
It also states that ABC is used by a “notorious” gun runner, Victor Butt, to launder money as well as buy small arms from the unstable countries like Somalia, South Sudan and Pakistan. Pakistan, sources at the Banking Fraud Unit (BFU) intimate, the money came through ABC bank.
A confidential letter from the Scotland Yard to Central Bank and copied to the Banking Fraud Unit in January also urges BFU to investigate the “strong appetite” ABC bank has for the housing sector, particularly in Nairobi and the Kenyan coast, Mombasa.
National Lands Commission confirms that the bank has acquired a huge swath of land in Lamu about 100 acres, near where the new proposed port is to be built. The commission, however, can’t tell me if the land was acquired legally and for what purposes.
In July 2017, the National Intelligence Services (NIS) released what it referred to as a situational report, saying that there were a lot of commercial banks’ irregularities in Kenya.
We have an internal memo (CBK/GOV/23/09/2018) dated September 21 2018, from Mr Gerald A. Nyaoma of the Central Bank of Kenya to Dr Njoroge, Dr Haron Sirima and Sheila M’Mbijjewe, claiming that the Supervision Department team had completed its investigations into the serious allegations that link the African Banking Corporation Limited with criminal activities.
The African Banking Corporation (ABC) Limited has in the last couple of months been undergoing CBK audits, stress checks and risk tests, putting the institution to question over its future survival. Sources at the Central Bank say the bank has “questionable” practices like Imperial Bank and to a small degree, the activities of the two financial institutions resemble.
At the centre of the CBK audits and tests were the bank’s liquidity position and it’s capital adequacy.
With such concern from the US government and CBK, the bank and some of its owners could actually be part of an international ring that launders money?
Billionaire of Asian origin, Madatali Chatur associated with the Diamond Plaza located at Highridge last year indicated that he was selling his estate after being linked to the international drug trade.
Chatur put on sale all his Kenyan properties estimated to be worth Sh76.99 billion.
Sources well versed with how the tycoon accumulated his wealth revealed that ever since the Akasha brothers were extradited to United States to face drug charges, he has been a worried man.
The Kenyan government extradited the sons of the slain drug baron Ibrahim Akasha – Baktash Akasha and his brother Ibrahim, Ghulam Hussein and Indian national Vijaygiri Goswami to the US to face drug charges.
Chatur runs banks accounts at ABC Bank associated with his friends, the Savani brothers – Shamaz Savani and Ashraf Savani.
A recent story carried on this site indicates that US government and CBK are deeply concerned that some of ABC Bank owners could actually be part of an international ring that launders money.
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