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Collapsed sacco staff charged with over Sh1bn fraud

Thursday September 5 2019

Good Life Sacco founder and chairman Obadiah Maina

Good Life Sacco founder and chairman Obadiah Maina. PHOTO | FILE 

TITUS OMINDE
By TITUS OMINDE
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An employee of a collapsed sacco was on Thursday charged with more than 40 counts of conspiracy to defraud its members of millions of shillings four years after the institution went under

Appearing before Eldoret Senior Principal Magistrate Sylvia Wewa, Ms Rachael Wangui Wachira, a former senior employee of Good Life Savings and Cooperative Society, was also charged with operating a financial business without a valid licence.

SH 1 BILLION

Ms Wachira and Good Life Sacco founder and chairman Obadiah Maina are accused of stealing over Sh1 billion in deposits by hundreds of members.

In asking for tougher sanctions against the suspects, the prosecution said the managers have been on the run after defrauding hundreds of sacco members of millions of shillings in savings.

The court heard that the accused committed the offences between 2013 and 2015 in Eldoret.

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The prosecution told the court that the accused engaged in a scheme that aimed at defrauding innocent savers a total of Sh26,165,200 in Eldoret. She denied all charges.

The court directed the accused be released on Sh7 million bond with a similar surety or an alternative of cash bail of Sh4 million.

Meanwhile, the court directed that Mr Maina be detained at the Eldoret GK prison after his bond of Sh1 million bond was withdrawn for absconding court on several occasions.

ARRESTED

Both cases will be mentioned on September 17.

Last month, the Eldoret chief Magistrate Charles Obulutsa issued warrants of arrest for Mr Maina for absconding court.

Mr Maina was initially arrested by Directorate of Criminal Investigation in 2015 and was later released on a Sh1 million bond.

The case has dragged on for years due to adjournments and failure by the accused to appear in court.

Before the collapse, the savings society had attracted over Sh1 billion. It had branches in Eldoret, Nairobi, Thika, Nyeri, Nakuru and Nyahururu.

In 2018, the Commissioner of Co-operatives Mary Mungai cancelled the Sacco licence and invited former members to file claims with the appointed liquidators, Johnson Njoroge and Gerald Mwai.