The cash-strapped Development Bank of Kenya Limited (DBK) is facing fresh internal woes that risk occasioning massive bank flight after it emerged a senior manager is on an irregular credit profiling spree of clients, The Informer can reveal.
In the recent past, a number of depositors and investors have been taken aback after they were notified to be reported loan defaulters to credit reference bureaus by the bank after applying for loan facilities to their respective potential lenders.
The Informer has learnt that Development Bank insiders have even sabotaged efforts by some of the lenders whom their victimized clients have long-running business relationship with and hold their Know Your Customer (KYC) credentials offer to credit the monies and have their clients’ records appraised under CRB.
According to a heap of records in our possession, one of the senior managers accused of sabotaging clients is DBK Credit Manager Olga Sechero.
One of the case in point involves the Seefar Apartments mortgage financing.
The controversial Seefar Apartments project condemned for demolition for occupying a riparian zone demolition was put on hold indefinitely in 2019.
The Members of Parliament extended the moratorium until a report being prepared by a multi-agency technical team relating to the safety of the Nairobi dam is concluded.
This gave a reprieve to homeowners.
Homeowners who sourced mortgage financing from DBK to purchase the apartments with the houses serving as securities have been subjected to untold agony.
Despite unilaterally raising the payable monthly installment amount to almost two fold the originally agreed figure, our investigations have established the bank is demanding additional securities as collateral for the same houses.
However, DBK’s Acting Chief Executive Officer Johnson Kiniti, a team from Legal department and corporate department are said to have expressed dissatisfaction with the new move masterminded by Olga supported by a section of the board led by Board chairman Ndungu Gathinji.
Due to loss of tenants occasioned by the then hyped demolition efforts coupled by the Covid-19 pandemic effects on the economy, another faction of the board and management respectively internally called initiation of a moratorium arrangement between the bank and clients to have the existing loans restructured accordingly.
However, another wing is vehemently opposed to the idea.
“We write to confirm that we are agreeable to restructuring outstanding credit facilities. Consequently, CRB rating will be enhanced appropriately.” One of the letters by DBK team that Olga has declined to sign reads in part.
The Environment Committee of the National Assembly chaired by Maara legislator Kareke Mbiuki said the proposed demolition goes against the spirit of President Uhuru Kenyatta’s Big Four agenda on affordable housing. The report faulted the government for handling the matter casually by issuing the demolition orders without any technical report.
The committee called on the Water Resources Authority (WRA) and the National Environment Management Authority (Nema) not to demolish the apartments until the multi-agency team submits its report to the committee.
The buildings in Nyayo Highrise Estate on Mbagathi Way have 264 two-bedroom and 24 three-bedroom apartments, on the edge of the Nairobi Dam, and cover an area of 31,000 square metres. Problems for the homeowners began in October 2018, when WRA presented Ederman with a 14-day demolition notice.
Nema and WRA argued that the apartments — in three blocks of 12 floors — were standing on the riparian reserve of both the Nairobi Dam and Ngong River.
The MPs ruled that it is important to establish who should compensate the homeowners in case the apartments are demolished because they are servicing mortgages they used to acquire the units.