The Ethics and Anti- Corruption Commission (EACC) in one of its biggest wins as the anti-Corruption Court orders a securities investment firm to compensate National Social Security (NSSF) Kshs. 4.8Billion. Former NSSF Investment Manager has been sent to jail for 14years or a fine of Kshs.2.6billion.
The EACC successfully got the conviction of former NSSF Investment Manager Francis Moturi Zuriels, stock brokerage company, Discounts Securities Limited and its officials-Wilfred Weru-Finance Manager, Isaac Nyamongo—Investment Manager for their role in the scandal which saw the giant workers’ Pensions Fund lose Kshs. 1.6billion through a fraudulent investment deal.
The former NSSF Investment Manager Francis Moturi Zuriels and his co-accused including the brokerage firm were convicted of fraudulent acquisition of Kshs.1.2billion from NSSF be sentenced by the anti-corruption Court Chief Magistrate Lawrence Mugambi after finding them guilty of corruption.
The case, going back to 2008 followed investigations by the anti-graft agency EACC into allegations that NSSF had lost Kshs. 1.6Billion of pensioners funds through irregular trading in shares through Discount Securities Limited. The scandal involved a scheme whereby shares worth Ksh.1.2billion were paid for by NSSF but were not delivered by Discount Securities Limited. The suspects were then arrested and charged in the anti-corruption Court in Nairobi.
Chief Magistrate Mugambi found Discounts Securities and its three officials- Githaiga, Weru and Nyamongo, guilty of fraudulent acquisition of public property contrary to section 45 (1)(a) as read with Section 48 of Anti-Corruption and Economic Crimes Act (ACECA), 2003.
Further, the Court found the former NSSF investment Manger as well as the securities investment firm and its officials guilty of Conspiracy to Defraud contrary to Section 317 of the Penal Code.
The NSSF Investment Manager Moturi was further found guilty of Deceiving Principal contrary to Section 41(2) as read with Section 48 of ACECA.
The court sentenced them as follows; 1st Accused:Francis Moturi Zuriels-Investment Manager NSSF – a fine of KES 2.602,744.80 Billion – in default 14 years imprisonment, 4th Accused:David Githaiga – Executive Director Discount Securities – a fine of KES 802,762.27 million in default 14 years imprisonment, 5th Accused:Wilfred Munyoru Weru – Finance Manager Discount Securities Ltd – a fine of KES 802 million in default 12 years NSSF/ Discount Securities case sentence imprisonment, 6th Accused:. Isaac Nyamongo- a fine of KES 802,762 248.27 million in default 14 years imprisonment and 7th Accused:Discount Securities Ltd:Fined Kshs.4 806,573,489.60. The convicted persons cannot hold public office for the next 10 years. In total the convicts were fined – 9,817,146 979.21 billion and a total sentence of 50 years.
The Court acquitted NSSF’s former Deputy Managing Trustee Mr. James Akoya and former Internal Audit Manager Mary Ndirangu. One other accused is said to have died before the conclusion of the case.
This conviction is timely as the loss of public funds through fraud is an area of great concern for anti-corruption agencies as well as President Uhuru Kenyatta. Kenya is said to lose approximately Ksh.2Billion daily through corruption, to the detriment of the development of the country and the welfare of Kenyans.