City lawyer Ahmednasir Abdullahi wants the EACC to investigate Central Bank governor Patrick Njoroge over abuse of office claims.
Abdullahi said in a “criminal complaint” filed with the commission that Njoroge incurred operational expenses and created liability without the authority or supervision of the board of directors.
The lawyer said that in the absence of the board, the governor has spent billions of taxpayers’ money and operated without management oversight.
He noted, in the complaint filed through his Nairobi Law Monthly publication, that this was against the law.
“Dr Njoroge, notwithstanding the patronage he so enjoys, must be investigated properly. He has breached the law and this matter must be addressed through proper and bonafide investigations by your organization. He has been miraculously running CBK as a one- man show, he tells the EACC.
“Njoroge has been incurring huge capital expenditure without any board appraisal, authority or supervision . He has in the process abused his office, usurped the powers of the board and acted in flagrant breach of the law.”
Abdullahi’s complaint raises questions about decisions the governor took on Dubai, Imperial and Chase banks which had been placed under receivership.
National Bank of Kenya managers were also suspended and a cap placed on interest rates.
The decisions were taken in the absence of the board, with the possibility of constitutional and legal challenges.
The printing of new currency notes also remained suspended due to the absence of the board.
“Though our client does not subscribe to the widespread public perception that your organization is a mere lapdog, an appendage of the executive, and thus investigates only those who have fallen out of political favor, we are of the considered opinion that this case gives you an opportunity not only to disapprove this widely held public perception but to also set the record straight,” said the lawyer.
The CBK Act says the governor cannot incur expenses without the approval of the board of directors.
It charges the board with determining the policy of the bank and consistently reviewing its performance and that of the governor.
The board is also mandated with determining whether policy statements are consistent with the bank’s primary function and policy objectives.
Board finally named
The bank’s management had operated for close to 18 months without a valid board before President Uhuru Kenyatta made appointments on November 8.
Uhuru named members to join chairman Mohamed Nyaoga who was appointed alongside Njoroge in June 2015.
He appointed Rachel Dzombo, Samson Cherutich, Ravi Ruparel, Nelius Kariuki and Charity Kisotu.
Under Kenya gazette notice 9235 dated November 3, Ruparel, Kariuki and Kisotu’s appointments came into effect on November 4. Dzombo and Cherutich will begin working on December.
The appointees who were approved by Parliament last month will all serve the board for a period of four years.
The term of the previous board ended in March 2015 – board meetings have not been held since then despite the legal requirement for meetings to take place every two months. The quorum was set as five members, including at least three directors.
The Commission on Administrative Justice had issued a red alert over the delayed appointment of the board.