Worst Banks in Kenya: The DusitD2 Complex was hit by terrorists from 15 to 16 January 2019 in the Westlands area of Nairobi. This terror attack left some 21 people dead and many others nursing serious injuries.
As investigations into the terror attack kicked off, one Kenyan bank was quickly caught up in a dangerous scandal. The Diamond Trust Bank. This was after the director of public prosecution determined that the bank had reportedly aided and abetted the terror attack by allowing one of the terror suspect to withdraw more than Sh. 5 million in a day.
Apparently, Hassan Nur made 13 withdrawals of Sh. 400,000 each within short intervals on January 4, with an additional withdrawal of Sh. 100,000 the same day. The transactions were done the Diamond Trust Bank Eastleigh branch under the branch manager Sophia Mbogo.
Mbogo was arrested and arraigned in court with six other suspects on January 23 2019. She was charged with failing to report the bulk and suspicious transactions.
The Anti-Terrorism Police Unit said the money was sent from South Africa and was wired to Somalia.
According to ATPU’s inspector Monicah Githaiga, Ms. Mbogo had failed to report suspicious transactions after Nur withdrew the cash.
She was arrested alongside five other suspects including lawyer Abdinoor Ismael, journalist Ismael Ambitham of Horizon TV and the TV’s marketing manager Ali Khamis. Others were businessman Faisal Mohamed, who ran a parcel business. He is believed to have been contracted to deliver parcels to DusitD2 hotel and office complex by lead attacker Ali Gichunge.
All the suspects except Ms. Mbogo were in communication with the attackers involved in the Dusit attack and other contacts in Somalia.
Ms. Mbogo, who said she was a widow, protested the charges and said that she neither knew the other five suspects linked to the attack nor had numerous personal bank accounts at DTB. “I don’t know even the accused persons. I have never had any professional dealings with them as they do not operate any accounts with the institution,” she stated.
“I’m an innocent bystander. I’m a law abiding citizen with no previous criminal conviction,” she stated. “The bank, being an agent of Safaricom, releases the float according to instructions issued by the firm.”
Mbogo said based on an agreement between Safaricom and banks, Safaricom’s agents can approach any bank, and upon confirmation by the firm, the bank releases the float to the agents. She said none of the five suspects held an account with the Diamond Trust Bank.
A month later, in February, DPP Haji said the money withdrawn from Diamond Trust Bank Eastleigh branch was wired to Jilib town in Somalia, “which is the headquarters” of Al Shabaab militia. “This money was not just going anywhere; it was going to Jilib town, which is the headquarters of Al Shabaab,” he said. He added that DTB had failed to report to the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) the suspicious transactions involving the Sh. 30 million, yet on normal occasions the suspect was withdrawing a maximum of Sh. 400,000. Worst Banks in Kenya.