Matters Imperial Bank: This is one topic I promised NOT to revisit but recent happenings makes me do exactly that .
I now believe that Imperial Bank collapse made an already bad Kenya coast situation worse. Well the bank directors can blame a dead man but dead men tell no tales . To the directors of the bank , when you choose to serve as a bank director it comes with serious responsibility and fiduciary care hence accountability cannot just be wished away. Wherever you are I am pretty sure you will read this piece and my apologies for reminding you about the pain and anguish your bank left behind.
Do you know that Malindi a predominantly Italian supported town is grinding to a halt because majority of the people in that small town were banking with you ? To make it worse pensioners along the Kenya coast from Watamu to Diani were all banking with you because your bank gave crazy Interest rates and most of them were living off the interest? I recall being approached to give a fixed amount to earn the “handsome’ interest but my faith did not allow me and I politely declined, not that I had so much idle cash anyway. Well I know quite a number of Italians who have chosen to leave Malindi and Kenya for that matter. They are no longer able to survive hence they are better off back home maybe they can fall back to what they left behind in their home country. These pensioners were employing on average 3 employees and they were buying local stuff keeping many locals in employment. If you think I am exaggerating please drive around Malindi and Watamu and see how many homes are up for sale and empty houses.
Let me now be more specific and narrate the pain you left behind >>>
Case No 1, I met an old family friend the other day she is close to 70. She sold the big family home to choose to move to a smaller apartment since the children are now all grown and she wanted a more cozy place with better security and of course the extra cash was to help her with her upkeep. Two days after getting paid for the house Imperial bank went under and in the process this old lady has been left both homeless and penniless. She was just about to sort out payment for her new place, she is now back being a tenant after so many years being under her own roof. To you Imperial Bank director wherever you are , how do you feel as you enjoy that nice cappuccino when you left behind such sad tales?
Case No2. As a Rotarian we had sponsored a clinic in lamu. We partnered with another Rotary club in the US. They finally wired USD50,000. Two days after the amount hit the account, Imperial went under. To date we are yet to make good the promise we made to poor people in lamu while our fellow Rotarians in US are equally at a loss to explain to the donors at their end giving Africa a really bad name. For us our personal credibility has been damaged quite badly.
Case No 3. I happen to relate to many senior citizens , This is also an old man who is retired aged 70+ living off interest . One morning everything went under , he has no income, not employable and now living a hard life. To you Imperial bank director I ask you wherever you are how do you feel leaving such sorry tale? How do you feel sipping that Pina colada at some private lounge wherever?
Case No 4. A middle aged quite successful businessman in Mombasa with 2 children employing a good number of residents . One morning he could not access his money . He now depends on handouts and friends including paying fees for his young ones. To you Imperial Bank director, as you take that exotic holiday sinking your feet in sand enjoying a spa treatment , how do you feel? Putting young families in such a mess?
Case No 5. A young couple had saved over the years and were ready to send their daughter to a European university . Just when it was about time to transfer the funds Imperial bank does a titanic on them and overnight all the plans that took a decade were destroyed. Put yourselves in the shoes of that young girl and her parents Do you think this girl will ever forgive you as your own children plans are not affected and life goes on for you .
These are not fictitious people , they all exist , you may NOT know most of your customers. I was also one of our clients. Many of us trusted the genuine nice people you employed who convinced many of us to bank with you. I know several of them who feel pained facing all these desperate souls. As a director please put yourselves in the shoes of that relationship manager who was only doing his or her job to get many of us to bank with you. Their personal credibility is at stake since many victims may never understand that they were not part of the deal. Personally I understand they were NOT part of the scheme, this was being played at a very high level higher than even a branch manager.
To you Bwana Director how do you feel walking around quite freely like you have done nothing wrong , feel nothing . Don’t tell me about a dead man. The mess at your bank did not just happen overnight. This was something that was cooking for ages. As ordinary Kenyans we may not do anything to you , many of us don’t even know you . We leave you to judge yourself for now before the long arm hopefully catches up with you.
Well on behalf of all the souls above we leave you with this “Karma Has No Deadline ”