Cabinet Secretary without portfolio Raphael Tuju and three children Yma, Mano and Alma are in trouble for disobeying court orders in Ksh1.6 billion debt row.
High Court judge Mary Kasango directed the four to appear in court on September 21 to show cause why they should not be jailed for disobeying a directive to allow managers appointed by the East Africa Development Bank (EADB) – Muniu Thoithi and George Weru – to take over operations of Dari Limited.
The firm owns high-end Dari Restaurant in Nairobi’s Karen area and a 20-acre recreational resort dubbed Entim Sidai.
The four were listed as guarantors when the company borrowed a loan from EADB in 2015.
Dari Limited, however, defaulted the loan and was in January placed under receivership. Tuju protested the move and filed an appeal.
In the orders dated March 25, Tuju and co-directors were directed to hand to the receivers the company’s statement of affairs, financial returns and records as well as cash book from December 29, 2019.
The court also ordered the directors to hand over management accounts, list of debtors and creditors as at February 4, 2020 and the staff payroll.
But the receivers were blocked from accessing the Karen property by police officers manning the premises
In a ruling delivered on Thursday, justice Kasango reiterated that the managers appointed by the bank should be allowed to access the Karen property and run the business.
The bank through Senior Counsel Fred Ojiambo told the court that the directors had defied valid court orders and should be punished.
Tuju and his co-directors through Senior Counsel Paul Muite argued that they were denied the right to be heard before the court issued the receivership orders.
A fortnight ago, Tuju deposited Ksh50 million to stop auction of his property to recover the loan.
The writer understands that part of the deal of the Ksh943.9 million loan was to fund the acquisition of a property in Karen known as Tree Lane and for development and construction of residential units. But Tuju’s company fell out with the bank.
The loan has accumulated huge penalties after being defaulted in 2017.