Troubled Ekeza Sacco begins refunding members’ deposit

Troubled Ekeza Sacco has started refunding Sh2.4 billion in members’ deposits that was allegedly misappropriated under the chairmanship of controversial preacher David Kariuki Ngari aka Gakuyo.

In an advertisement in local dailies on Tuesday, the troubled sacco listed names of members earmarked to receive their refunds, marking the end of a protracted fight by an estimated 78,000 members to get their money back.

Those targeted for refunds had Sh1,600 up to Sh77,000 in deposits.

This comes more than five months after Mr Ngari announced a five-phase refund plan last May.

Ekeza Sacco was placed under probe last year by after an audit report by Commissioner of Co-operatives showed that Sh1 billion had been siphoned raising fears that depositors, mainly peasants, would lose their hard-earned savings.

“The statement (list of members and their deposit claims) will continue in subsequent placements in the coming weeks,” the sacco said in the dailies on Tuesday.

The Directorate of Criminal Investigations had last year invited Kenyans who had savings in the sacco to register their claims in efforts to compel company to refund members’ savings.

Mr Ngari is accused of siphoning more than Sh1 billion which he allegedly used to upgrade his lifestyle by buying prime properties for his family and boosting his struggling real estate firm.

The preacher is said to have started an investors’ club at Gakuyo Real Estate, where he and his wife Hannah Wachu are co-directors and asked Kenyans to invest their money to help the company run the business and in return reap a two percent monthly interest.