Ex-Kenya Re boss fined for fraud

The anti-corruption court has slapped a former director of Kenya Reinsurance Corporation (Kenya Re) with a fine of Sh15.2 million after was found guilty of stealing Sh7.26 million.

Mr Johnson Jackson Githaka is also staring at a two-year jail term in case he fails to pay the fine.

The court found that Mr Githaka fraudulently obtained Sh7.26 million paid by United Insurance Corporation to Kenya Re.

According to investigations by the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC), Mr Gathaka developed appetite for quick money when United Insurance Company was placed under statutory management by the Commissioner of Insurance on July 15, 2005.

The Commissioner of Insurance appointed Kenya Re as the statutory manager of United Insurance in a bid to improve its liquidity.

On September 23, 2005, United Insurance invited bids from interested buyers for United Insurance Towers, its headquarters, situated along Westlands Museum Hill Road.

The building was eventually bought by PTA Reinsurance Company for Sh242 million.

PTA paid the initial deposit of Sh24.2 Million through Muriu Mungai and Co. Advocates on December 23, 2005.

An agreement for the sale of United Insurance Towers dated January 4, 2006 was executed between the seller and the buyer.

On January 27, 2006, Mr Githaka, then Kenya Re managing director and also the statutory manager of United Insurance Company wrote to Muriu Mungai and Co. Advocates instructing them to release the commission of three percent of the sales price to an unspecified agent. That amounted to Sh7,260,000.

EACC investigations established that there were no agents in the sale of United Insurance Towers as the process was through competitive bidding.

On his part, Mr Githaka said that since he was a board member of PTA Reinsurance Company who purchased United Insurance Towers, he was entitled to the three percent commission which he later used to purchase personal property in Loresho, Nairobi.

The Director of Public Prosecutions in 2009 gave consent to charge Mr Githaka with various offences including fraudulent acquisition of public property.

In his ruling on Monday, Anti-Corruption Court Magistrate Felix Kombo convicted Mr Githaka while saying the State proved the case beyond reasonable doubt.

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