Kenya’s central bank (CBK) has cracked the whip on five local banks over their involvement in the theft of billions of shilling of taxpayers’ money.
On Wednesday, CBK said it had fined five commercial banks a total of Sh392.5 million ($3.89 million) in connection with the theft of funds at the National Youth Agency.
The five banks are Standard Chartered Kenya, Equity, Diamond Trust, Co-operative Bank and KCB Group.
The industry regulator accused the five banks of among others failing to report large transactions, failing to undertake proper due diligence on customers, approving large transactions without proper documents and failing to report suspicious transactions.
According to CBK, all the five banks received a total of more than Sh3 billion ($30 million) from the national youth service on behalf of their customers but failed to notified the lender contrary to what the law states.
Central bank said it had discussed its findings with all the five banks and they had pledged to ensure compliance with all laws in the future and to draw up plans for sealing gaps that were identified.
Dozens of senior government officials and business people were charged in May with various charges related to the theft of nearly $100 million from the youth agency, NYS, marking a new effort to crack down on widespread graft.
Central Bank has meanwhile forward its investigation findings onto criminal detectives to assess whether they would bring any charges.
More banks are set to be investigated and punished if found guilty, the central bank added.