PANAMA PAPERS: Over 191 Kenyans have stashed cash overseas

Mwendia Nyaga. Courtesy/YOUTUBE
Mwendia Nyaga. Courtesy/YOUTUBE

A new exposé by Panama papers has revealed that at least 191 Kenyans are among thousands of wealthy individuals listed for operating secret offshore companies and accounts to hide their wealth.

Among the prominent Kenyans in the list is the son of the owner of Imperial Bank that was put under receivership, Aly Popat.

At the time of going under receivership the financial institution was operating over 50,000 deposit accounts, with nearly Sh58 billion in deposits.

Aly Popat also sits in the board of Imaran Group, a Kenyan investment firm that also built properties such as Imperial Court in Westlands, Kivulini in Thika and the Mvuli in Nairob.

Popat is listed alongside Munira Popat in the ‘Panama Papers’.

The exposé by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) with a database of about 200,000 offshore accounts went online Monday.

Other key personalities in the list include James Gitau Singh who was the former chair of Youth Fund and a prominent city lawyer.

Businessman Faisal Mohammed who is in the centre of a Sh44 million ivory case is also listed among those individuals with a secret stash overseas. Mohammed was arrested by Interpol in Tanzania on suspicion of trafficking of ivory.

Mwendia Nyaga, former managing director of the National Oil Company, has also been named in the papers among the Kenyans with secret accounts.

Nyaga is the proprietor of Oil and Gas Company. He quit his job at National Oil to become an energy consultant for foreign companies coming to Kenya to explore the country’s oil prospects.

Last month Deputy Chief Justice Kalpana Rawal and her husband Hasmukhrai Rawal, and former President Daniel arap Moi’s business associate Joshua Kulei were also listed in the Panama Papers for operating secret offshore companies and accounts.

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Story By Wangui Ngechu
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