Kenyan Court Fights Ghana’s NIB Bank over “Stolen” £2 million From Bank’s Vaults

The National Investment Bank (NIB) is under order to produce 2million pounds sterling that was transferred to an account owned by a customer in 2016 after the NIB, in almost five years, refused to pay the money to the owner.

A January 2021 ruling by the Milimani Magistrate Court, Nairobi, asked the Imperial Bank Limited of Kenya, to liaise with the Central Bank of Kenya, to demand that NIB make the money available through the Bank of Ghana.

Ghana’s Attorney General was also named by the Court as an official of interest in the matter of ensuring the money is paid.

The ruling which was given under the gavel of His Worship B. Tuiyott directed the involvement of the two country’s Central banks and Attorneys General because disgracefully, the NIB has been malicious in the matter of the 2million pounds for almost five years.

“The honorable Court establishes the need to safeguard the interests of the applicant from possible malice by the defendant by in reference to absconding the implementation of the claim, do suggest and hereby instruct the Central Bank of Kenya to liaise with the equivalent regulator of Ghana to ensure a timely implementation of the orders,” the court said.

“The honourable Court is aware of the possible transfer of jurisdiction in reference to the subject matter, and in return, invites the Attorney General of Ghana, or his/her equivalent to supervise the full implementation of the orders, in partnership with the institution mentioned in para 6,” part of the court ruling read.

NIB skirted around the suit and did not attend court nor send representatives to explain the massive scandal.

The issue has to do with a payment award that a Ghanaian citizen, Gordon Lotsu, had received from the government of Kenya.

Mr. Lotsu had been domiciled in the UK and had had his human rights abused, leading to him seeking justice in court. The nature of his case, resonated with some injustice that the Mau Mau war veterans of Kenya had suffered and so, with the facilitation of former US President, Barak Obama and the Kenyan President, Uhuru Kenyata, his case had been conjoined with that of the Mau Mau war veterans.

The UK government eventually awarded compensation of 20million pounds to the Mau Mau war veterans and then on 18 November 2010, the Royal High Court of Strand, London, gave judgment in favor of Mr. Lotsu as entitled to 2million pounds out of the 20million pounds settlement.

That judgment, given by Justice MacDuff in Court No. 37 after Mr. Lotsu had litigated for seven years as a litigant in person, was obeyed by the Kenyan government.

Mr. Lotsu, who had his bank account in Ghana with the NIB then forwarded his bank details to the Kenyan government to transfer the money. The Kenyan government duly transferred the money.

However, a soft copy of payment advice that had been emailed to Mr. Lotsu by the Kenyatta government had been stolen by hackers who had managed to hack his email. NIB and the Bank of Ghana, therefore, refused to pay him the money without the payment advice.

Mr. Lotsu, therefore, wrote back to the Kenyan government for another copy, which the government duly sent, copying the NIB.

However, in spite of the evidence, the NIB refused to pay Mr. Lotsu, somehow managing to keep him away from his money since 2016.

As part of the excuses, the Bank allegedly told Mr. Lotsu several times that it has not received any money from the Kenyan government. And a frustrated Mr. Lotsu at one point was even branded a mad man and subjected to arrest and Police brutalities by authorities.

Meanwhile, the Imperial Bank of Kenya, through which the Kenyan government had transferred the 2million pounds, kept pressuring the NIB to make the payment to Godwin Lotsu. Eventually, when it became clear that the NIB was up to something fishy, the Imperial Bank of Kenya went to court in January 2021, to force the NIB to cough up the money.

On the day the Milimani Magistrate Court gave judgment in the ‘Imperial Bank Ltd Vs National Investment Bank’ NIB stayed away from the court, apparently knowing that it had no case.

“The courts observe the first defendant to have opted to stay away from the ruling and proceeding of the subject motion regardless of the efforts by the registrar to reach the defendant.

“The honourable Court is aware of a Notice of Motion dated 18th January 2021 suggesting the existence of unnecessary delays by the defendant on 25th January 2021 prima facie, and entry of Summary Judgement in accordance with the Plaint filed 26th January 2021

“Many of the facts leading to the Dispute herein are agreed. Imperial Bank Limited had registered a payment of two million Sterling Pounds (£2,000,000.00) in favour of Gordon Lotus under the agreed compensation fund through the defendant.

“The amount was not transmitted as intended ab initio, and the defendant has moved to court seeking the aid of the honourable Court in compelling the remittance of the same to the beneficiary, and the interested party in the suit, Gordon Lotsu.

“The honourable Court, in the knowledge of the attached interests from the sworn Affidavit filed by the Applicant, finds the claim valid and instructs the applicant to send a request to the recipients under the monitoring of the Central Bank of Kenya,” the court ruled.

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