Kenya’s Asset Recovery Agency (ARA) has withdrawn its allegation of money laundering against Korapay, a Nigerian-based payment business. The withdrawal was filed at the High Court of Kenya’s Anti-Corruption and Economic Crimes Division on the 19th of October, 2022, by Stephen Githinji, the state counsel, on behalf of ARA. This was decided after the Kenyan authorities checked and validated the company’s records and transfer processes.
Part of the letter filed by ARA reads, “Please note that investigations are now finalised. I would like to confirm that allegations of money laundering and card fraud against [Kora] were not established. Please treat this communication as final.”
Concerning the allegation, Gideon Orovwiroro, Kora’s Chief Operations Officer, said the company has consistently maintained its innocence during the trial period.
He said, “We are glad that the ARA and the DCI have finally dropped all charges and ratified Kora. We’d also like to commend both agencies for their professionalism and thoroughness in seeing this investigation to the conclusive end.
Kora acknowledges the potential Kenya presents as we pursue our mission to make it easy for global businesses to accept payments in Africa and for African businesses to accept international payments.
We are delighted to get back to building the most robust payment product on the African continent. Some exciting announcements are coming soon, including multi-currency bank account products for African businesses. This will empower merchants to have bank accounts in GBP, EUR, USD, and other in-demand currencies. Kora is excited about this development as it is further proof of its commitment to enrich the quality of merchants’ payments and build more meaningful financial products.”
The allegation levelled against Korapay
According to the allegation filed in two separate suits by ARA in July 2022, Korapay and Kandon Technologies Limited illegally transferred $51 million (Sh6 billion) into Kenya. Following the court suit, a Kenyan High Court presided over by Lady Justice Esther Maina on the 14th of July, 2022, ordered the freezing of the accounts of the two fintech companies.
The court froze $249,990 (Sh29.5 million) in Kora’s Equity Bank account and $126,841 (Sh15 million) in Kandon Technologies Limited’s two UBA accounts. The two companies, according to ARA, were also connected to five other Nigerian companies and a Kenyan businessman.
The associated companies are Flutterwave Ltd, Elivalat Fintech Ltd, Hupesi Solutions, Boxtrip Travels and Tours, Bagtrip Travels Ltd, Cruz Ride Auto Ltd, and businessman Simon Karanja.
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