Kiereini wants court to stop CMA lockout

Tuesday August 28 2012

Former CMC chairman Jeremiah Kiereini. Photo/FILE

Former CMC chairman Jeremiah Kiereini. Mr. Kiereini has quit the board of Unga Limited, ending a boardroom career that spanned more than 28 years at the Nairobi bourse-listed miller.Photo/FILE Nation Media Group

By PAUL JUMA [email protected]

Former CMC Holdings chairman Jeremiah Kiereini has moved to court to stop the Capital Markets Authority (CMA) from disqualifying him from appointment as director of any listed company.

In an application that the High Court has certified as urgent, Mr Kiereini has also asked the court to suspend the implementation or enforcement of all findings, determinations and resolutions contained in a CMA report touching on him.

The former CMC Holdings director was among seven others that the CMA, on August 3, disqualified for appointment as a director of any listed company, including a securities exchange in the capital markets. (READ: Kiereini defends himself over CMC funds saga scandal)

Mr Martin Forster, Mr Sobakchand Shah, former Attorney General Charles Njonjo, Mr Peter Muthoka, Mr Richard Kemoli and Mr Andrew Hamilton were also disqualified.

The capital markets regulator took the action following findings of investigations into the affairs of CMC Holdings by South African audit firm Webber Wentzel and the regulator’s own investigations.

The findings, which the CMA confirmed through an ad hoc committee report, indicated that Mr Kiereini had participated in the operation of off-shore accounts and benefited from them at the expense of the company.

He and the other directors were also accused of adopting a risky business model for the company and failing to effectively oversee the management of the company.

“The CMA report was the culmination of an unlawful process,” Mr Kiereini states, adding that the regulator deliberately disregarded and violated his constitutional rights.

The CMA recommended the recovery from two of the directors — including Mr Kiereini — the sum equivalent to twice the amount of the alleged benefit that accrued to them from the off-shore arrangements.

The former career civil servant, who rose to become Head of Public Service and Secretary to the Cabinet, says the accusations have eroded his “stellar reputation built painstakingly over the past 60 years.”