Shelter Afrique pushes back board meeting on assault
Posted Wednesday, July 18 2012 at 21:02
Shelter Afrique has postponed a board meeting that was to discuss an assault case pitting its managing director against the finance director to next Thursday.
The meeting, which was to take place on Wednesday, will look into the events that led to the clash between the head of the lender, Allassane Ba, and the finance director, Karen Kandie.
Shelter Afrique chairman Elias Mpondela said the board would meet after carrying out “wide consultations” including with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which indicated on Tuesday that Mr Ba should be arrested over the alleged assault.
“The board of directors will, on July 26, hold a meeting to discuss the nature and circumstances of the altercations between senior officials of the company,” said Mr Mpondela in a statement on Wednesday.
“Shelter Afrique board is investigating and carrying out wide consultations on the reported events, including direct engagement with the Kenya’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs.”
Sources at Shelter Afrique say that the board meeting was derailed by the statement from the Foreign Affairs ministry that stated that Mr Ba’s diplomatic immunity does not cover cases of assault and other crimes.
“It is clearly implied in this provision that the immunities enjoyed under the host country agreement are not absolute,” Foreign Affairs PS Thuita Mwangi told the Police Commissioner Mathew Iteere in a letter quoted in the Daily Nation on Wednesday.
Mr Mwangi asked Mr Iteere to issue a warrant for arrest for Mr Ba, who is a Mauritian and has worked as head of the home financier since 2009.
“The board wished to sit when all the information regarding the saga has been unveiled by the police and the Immigration ministry so that an informed decision is taken regarding the fallout,” said a senior official at Shelter Afrique who sought anonymity due to the sensitivity of the matter.
Mr Ba is alleged to have assaulted Ms Kandie at the firm’s offices on June 28. Police at Capital Hill Station questioned the Mauritian, but they could not detain or charge him since he was said to enjoy diplomatic immunity.
In her statement to the police, Ms Kandie claims that Mr Ba physically assaulted her in his office, causing her bruises to her limbs, when she went to confront him regarding her end of year performance appraisals.
The Business Daily was unable to contact Ms Kandie over the issue since her mobile phone was off and she is also out of office due to a suspension following the dispute.