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Investigations

Ruto And Duale Buys Off Biwott’s Air Kenya Limited As Attempts To Exempt The Duale’s From KPC Prosecutions Revealed

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Duale(L) and Ruto(R)

In Kenya, the more things change, the more they remain the same. Since the President intensified the fight and crackdown on corruption, we’ve witnessed arrests and ongoing prosecutions but at the same time, new scandals continue to crop up.

President announced a lifestyle audit on public officers and we’re yet to see the full implementation, however, we’re aware of ongoing money laundering schemes where ‘smart’ public officials including those in executive, are desperately laundering their ill acquired wealth before the lifestyle audit bell is hit.

Talking Of wealth, reports reaching Kenya Insights allege that DP and Duale jointly bought off Air Kenya Ltd previously owned by the late Biwott in what we’re told was a cool Sh1.8B deal sealed about two months ago. According to a source, the ownership is based on a 50/50 agreement between the two.

Air Kenyan is  now registered under Focus Aviation Mauritius and the Directors are Abdulaziz Aden (Duale’s son) and Adil Khawaja ( representing William).

Away from that, Kenya Pipeline is proving to be a hard not to crack for the DPP, for a parastatal with endless scandals, many have been wondering what’s taking Noordin too long to press play on his reggae playlist. But you’ll have to wait a bit longer, KPC comes with heavy political baggage.

Duale and Abdul Duale are heavily implicated in the KPC mess a detective source intimated to Kenya Insights. Joe Sang, the company’s MD who’s whole body deep in the murky scandal world will not go down without the Duale’s we’re told to show the levels of complexity in the case. Sources at DCI say that there have been open threats by the Duales and told that they had seriously invested in the government and that they are untouchable.

There’s a developing narrative that the DPP is delaying prosecutions yet the DCI have concluded their investigations on the KPC corruption. This one case that comes with political ramifications and questions are arising whether the DPP who happens to come from the same region with the Duale’s is hesitant on the consequences.

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”Touching Duale Family is a direct attack on WsR. That is a live wire.  Infact Dualle son Abdul is so close to Joe sang and Keter. DPP Knows touching that file is war.” Says a source privy to the investigations.

DCI uncovered transactions amounting to hundreds of Millions between Abdul Duale and Joe Sang’s cousin Hillary. When both parties we queried what the transactions were for they both claimed that it was not a crime to give money to friends.

“Chief architects of tender fixing at KPC are the Duale boys, they are so entrenched at KPC that even removing Joe Sang wont affect their activities.” Said another source speaking to KI. He continues, “KPC is a chess board for WSR and the Duale’s. At times they are united in Looting however sometimes they clash and fight bitterly when things don’t go their way. Duale’s are cunningly smart and share what they steal with management but for WSR its me, Myself and I. Thats what is going to finish WSR. His selfishness Unmatched.”

Abdul Duale is said to be the father’s right hand man. His finger prints all over state parastatals. At KPC they are involved in
1. Fibre- total was 1.8B
2. Devolution of KPC – 200M given to them. There was a big war between them and WSR over this.

3. Industrial area land was bought by a Company called Focus Logistics( Director is Abdulaziz Aden) at 150m and later sold to KPC at 600m 3 months later
4. Security consultancy. Awarded to Optilan UK and Black hawks eye (Aden duale and Abdul are Directors) value was 800m.

Mid November 2015 a meeting was called by One Abdul Duale ( Son of Aden Duale) at boma hotel. In attendance was Faith( Director KPC), Felicity Biriri( Director KPC), Joe sang (AG GM Finance then). The agenda was lack of control in KPC. The cartels had lost control as Previous MD Charles Tanui was sacked after Corruption allegations and his replacement was Mrs Florence.

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At this meeting of this 4 individuals a plan to oust was mooted. They had 2 Directors on their side already. Joe sang said he would convince Jerry and Neepee ( also Directors). The Kalenjins tasked Abdul Duale to Onboard John ngumi (Chair KPC) with whom they enjoyed a Cordial relationship.

A board meeting was subsequently scheduled 1 day before the Christmas holidays so that no eyebrows would be raised. In a Span of less than 1 hour Florence (Ag MD KPC) was ousted and replaced with Joe sang in Acting capacity. Mr Director kindly check the visitors book and Examine CCTV footage on 23Rd December 2015 at exactly 2:31 till 4:00pmYou will notice that Abdul Duale personally supervised the removal of Florence (Ag MD). Cctv footage from security will help you.

Abdul Duale was a close ally of Charles Tanui and often sat at the negotiating table for kickbacks on behalf of Tanui. When tanui left he became an orphan. Ag MD Florence had blocked all his contracts. Works were stopped and payments stopped also. He would visit Charles Tanui every other day probably to brief him on matters kickback.

After their successful mission to replace Florence the Cartel rejoiced and celebrated for days. Fast forward January 2016 Joe Sang os in office and alll cancelled contracts were reinstated. To begin with their was a Tender for Rehabilitation of the Nairobi – mombasa Pipeline that was awarded to The Duale family via Proxy during the Tanui Reign. It was Awarded to Center star Ltd. Amount was 490M. Florence (Ag MD) cancelled it after several issues were raised on the shell company.

The company had no experience for the sophisticated job that was to be undertaken. Mid January 2016 Abdul duale pushes for the reinstatement of the contract. Joe sang instructed the Mechanical team to reinstate it and he signed it off. A Kickback of 20M was delivered at Intercontinental Basement.
Distribution
joe Sang -6m
Faith and Felicity 6m
Legal – 2M

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The Cartel at KPC needed political protection and someone who also allowed them to eat unlike the DP who offered them protection but never allowed them to eat. DP would eat alone forgetting the team always. Political protection came via the Duale Family. Aden Duale and His son Abdul would protect Joe Sang from EACC, DCI and parliamentary Committees. In Return Joe Sang would be paying to the Duale family via Kickbacks.

The duales also provided the KPC cartel with money laundering options often charging them upto to 20% of the looted proceeds

1.Fibre Optic Cable

The Budget for this project was 300M. Joe sang gave instructions 6 months before the tender was advertised that this One belongs to Aden Duale. Duale and Son setup a Shell company and partnered it with JV of Express Automation.

All bidders quoted less than 300M including ZTE. Express Automation/white space quoted 880M. 500m Above the budgeted amount. The tender was marred by threats of deportation to ZTE from abdul duale if they ever appealed.

Beneficiary of the Kickbacks
Keter and PS – 100m
Joe Sang -20M
Lamek Rotich and Evaluation team -10m
Vincent Cheriyout – 1M

It will be a Futility if the political engines are not touched in cleaning up the KPC mess. As it stands, the political weight on KPC corruption continues to take toll as reports point at s conflict in the sense that both Ruto and Uhuru’s allies are swallowed into the multi billion theft at the oil courier. Kenyans are keen to see how the DPP will handle this case.


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Investigations

Lobby Group Wants Co-Operative Bank And Nairobi County Assembly’s Salary Deal Investigated With Corruption Red Flags Raised

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Nairobi County’s Assembly.

A concerned city resident, Kelvin Njihia has written to the anti corruption body EACC and DCI to launch investigations into widespread corruption and impunity cases at the capital’s county assembly.

In a letter addressed to the two bodies, Njihia claims  there are serious integrity and public trust issues within City Hall. He alleges that the County assembly has gone against the set threshold by Salaries and remuneration commission restricting members not be in more than four committees.

According to his findings, most senior members in the board and their allies, have occupied more than four committees thereby contravening the law. The petitioner want members of the assembly occupying the extra committees to be investigated and prosecuted over corruption and the impunity displayed. He lists top officials flagged in his findings including;

  • Elias Otieno Okumu- 7 committees.
  • Esther Waithera Chege- 6 committees
  • Abdi Ibrahim Hassan- 6 committees
  • Peter Wahinya Njau- 5 committees
  • Peter Anyule Mwatok- 5 committees
  • Juliet June Ndegwa- 5 committees

 

Rest of the list

Besides, the concerned citizen coalition want the assembly to be probed as to how salaries of the members is channeled through cooperative bank contrary to the SRC’s directive and s contravention of county and national laws.

The petition also noted that the suspended County’s assembly clerk Jacob Ngwele who’s out of office over miss appropriation of funds still executes official duties despite the court’s directive. Ngwele in what the petition claims to be a contempt of court, recently invited public’s participation in approval of Halkano Dida Waqo as County’s Chief Executive Officer for ICT in what is flagged as one of many suspicious appointments.

The questionable advertisement signed by Ngwele on Daily Nation.

Ngwele himself was illegally appointed into office and being investigated for the same. Petition also want the commission to speed investigations and findings following the impeachment of County’s Speaker Beatrice Elachi.

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They want the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission to give updates on the Majority leader of the Nairobi County Assembly Mr Ibrahim Abdi Hassan who had been summoned by the commission over the City Hall clash pitting members against Speaker Beatrice Elachi.

EACC ordered Hassan to appear at the Integrity Centre on September 12, 2018 to record a statement that will aid in the investigation of members’ conducts. He’s alleged to have conspired with members in wider plot to oust the speaker. According to the petition, Elachi was kicked out due to her lack of corporation in fraud schemes hatched by the board members.

Petitioner wants the DCI to dive in and investigate why the county’s salaries are being channeled through co-operative bank and not directly from central bank to individual’s accounts in what is read with suspicions.


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Investigations

FRAUD: Bungoma County’s Nzoia Water Services Board Sneakily Attempts To Impose Kennedy Wekesa Kilali As The MD

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Ag. MD Kennedy Wekesa.

Nzoia Water made an advertisement for open positions of Managing Director and Head of Internal Audit and Risk Management in daily nation dated October 23,2018 page 18 under anonymous company in western Kenya.

The following non conformities were noted which do not either conform with industry practices and approved operational HR Manual of the company as per the attached Advertisement:

1. The advertisement was only mentioning a leading water company in Western Kenya,excluding Kitale which falls in Rift Valley. Does it mean Kitale has separated from Bungoma and they have formed their own company? If not what is the effect of these on long term relationship with Trans-nzoia County?
2. The advertisement of MD’s position failed to meet the minimum threshold as per legal notice no.137 of 2012 which requires inviting the prospective candidates to have Masters Degree and registered members of respective bodies e.g  for Engineers should be registered with Engineers Registration Board(ERB) OR Institute of Engineers of Kenya ( IEK) and not Institute of Engineering Technicians (IET)  meant for Technicians who are lower cadre staff of the company.

The advertisement as it appeared on the dailies.

3. The requirements of chapter six was not observed in the advertisement which requires the prospective applicants to submit their chapter six compliance during the application as it forms part of shortlisting process and not to produce them during the interview.
4. The last advertisement through daily Nation were received without matching list from them,which resulted in most candidates who had applied not being shortlisted as their applications never reached the company’s offices. There’s no surety that the process will not be compromised in favour of specific candidates?
5. The Ag. Managing Director has failed to implement the inspection report by WASREB.(According to workers petition)
6. The advertisement should have been made either through the consultant or in the company’s name for it to attract competitive qualified candidates and not the way it is hidden as it is aimed to prevent competition and thus attract less applicants.
7. Therefore ,the recruitment process be stopped and the position be re-advertised in line with the above requirements.

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Investigations

How Chinese Firm Housemart Limited Conspired To Steal Sh3B Of Kenyans Money Through Large Scale Money Laundering And Tax Evasion

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Mr Ye Wei, Managing Director Housemart Ltd In Court.

Kenya struggles to stay afloat with heavy foreign and domestic debts and the weight rests on the taxpayers who by design have to bare the wrath. We’re spending more than we’re earning interms of revenue collection which by reports has not been meeting targets. KRA has been failing to meets its obligations and they largely attribute it to non paying population.

Kenya and China have created a commercialized bond in the past decade and we’re witnessing an increased number of Chinese investors streaming into the country given cordial relationships to set up their companies here.

There’s an influx of Chinese nationals in Kenya but that’s a story for another day, the immigration department is currently doing a swoop on illegal immigrants many of which are Chinese and have been deported, just a few though meaning the problem still is intact.

Apart from mistreatment of locals, a good number of Chinese firms have been accused of several malpractices and fraudulent rings including tax evasion and that’s why we’re talking about Housemart Company Limited a subsidiary of Sunda International Ltd a leading exporter in building materials.

The Chinese company’s offices which are located on Mombasa road and are involved in the importation of various items including construction materials and household commodities, are also at the centre of a multi billion tax evasion scandal.

High Court’s Lady Justice Hedwig Ong’udi recently issued orders freezing the accounts of Housemart Company Ltd following an application by the Kenya Revenue Authority claiming that the Chinese firm has evaded tax through under declaration of Value Added Tax of its products since 2010 totaling to Sh2B.

The order was issued for preserving funds and prohibiting the release, transfer, payment or other dealings involving the money held by the company at Barclays Bank of Kenya, Standard Chartered Bank, NIC Bank and Bank of Africa pending determination of the suit.

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KRA says the Chinese company is engaged in tax evasion and money laundering through the creation of “briefcase companies” who have no physical presence in Kenya and used to syphon millions of shillings from the country.

According to preliminary findings of investigations done by KRA and presented before the court, it revealed that the company has evaded taxes amounting to sh2,243,781,488 between 2015 to 2017.

Playing their cards smart, Majority shareholders and beneficial owners of Housemart are foreigners and corporations with foreign addresses which are suspected to be tax havens, therefore, making it difficult to repatriate the funds once they exit Kenyan borders, a line of argument raised by KRA’s lawyer Sylvester Okello.

According to an affidavit filed by KRA forensic investigator Cyrell Wagunda, they received information in January that six companies were registered and used to open bank accounts in which proceeds from sales by Housemart Ltd were being channelled.

The companies include Colila Ltd, Akubi Ltd, Nkemm Ltd, Obest Ltd, Sunda Industrial Company Ltd and Wise Databank Ltd.

He swore that he discovered tax fraud and money laundering through diversion of sales and using fictitious forms to claim VAT refunds.

“We discovered they were using their employees or security groups contracted to transport cash totalling sh4 billion. Once the funds are transferred to the six companies’ accounts, they then wire it to another company based in China without declaring their tax,” swore Wagunda.

In one instance, the KRA official stated that a total of Sh515 million was deposited to Colila Ltd, Akubi Limited received Sh241 million, and Wise Databank Limited received Sh3.5 billion between 2015 and 2017.

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Separately, Housemart’s MD Mr Ye Wei was also caught in the same problem, the Chinese national was charged in a Nairobi court with three counts of tax evasion. Mr Ye was arraigned at the Milimani Law Courts where he was jointly charged with others not before court evading on payment of tax amounting to over Ksh 800 million and an additional count of failing to declare sales amounting to more than Ksh 3 billion.

He denied the charges and was released on a Ksh 2 million bond with a surety of a similar amount or a cash bail of Ksh 1 million. The case will be heard on November 21, 2018.

Between 1st January 2016 and 30th June 2017, he is alleged to have willfully defaulted in paying Ksh 154,328,071 being income tax payable to the Commissioner of Domestic Taxes in contravention of the Tax Procedures Act.

In the second count, Mr Ye is alleged to have defaulted in paying Ksh 583,353, 575 between 1st January 2016 and 30th June 2017, while in the third count, the defaulted income tax is indicated as amounting to Ksh 85, 082, 282. This is for the period between 1st January 2015 and 30th January 2017, according to the charge sheet.

In the fourth count, Mr Ye is alleged to have deliberately defaulted on an obligation to declare sales amounting to Ksh 3, 232, 584.773 for the period covering 20th January 2016 and 20th December 2017 to the Commissioner of Domestic Taxes as required by the Value Added Tax.

A look into this raises a serious concern over the levels of money laundering going on in the country more specifically with Chinese firms which I gather are very rampant. Outright, all these can’t hapoen without complicity and conspiracy with local authorities. It’s in this backdrop that as investigations advances, those KRA officials who’ve helped the company engage in this scam must also be investigated.

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Kenya can’t afford to humbly stay in a relationship with China when its not symbiotic. I doubt if there could be leniency if a Kenyan engaged in such scams in Beijing. Companies like Housemart and directors like Ye Wei ought to have their operation licenses withdrawn and conspirators like the fraud manager Ye and alike be thrown in jail.

Goodnews is the accounts are frozen even though Housemart has sued KRA for their action. While denying any link to the alleged malpractice, the firm noted that the caveat placed on its bank account has crippled its business operations and pleaded with the court to lift the freeze order.

Lemme say in my opinion, they deserve to suffer and even be thrown out of the country and operations if they can’t pay taxes and laundering money to tax havens. Doing business with such a company is also another risk one need to consider before inking any deal because you can imagine how many businesses have been now stalled with the accounts frozen. They should remain frozen until taxpayers recover their stolen money.

Money laundering and tax evasion is now becoming a real issue and Kenya Insights is dedicating efforts to highlight and expose scamming companies like Housemart, we’re therefore appealing for any useful information and tips on this topic so we can expose these frauds. Send me an email ([email protected])


Kenya Insights allows guest blogging, if you want to be published on Kenya’s most authoritative and accurate blog, have an expose, news, story angles, human interest stories, drop us an email on [email protected] or via Telegram
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