By Cyrus Ombati
Police are questioning a guard in connection with the loss of millions of shillings that was on transit from Eldoret to Nairobi.
The suspect was escorting the money said to be about Sh45 million from Eldoret airport to Nairobi via Jomo Kenyatta International Airport when he claims the money was robbed on Tuesday evening.
The money belongs to the Bank of Africa and was to be picked up from JKIA by armed police officers and guards from Wells Fargo, police said.
Police said the weight of the bag that contained the money was seven kilogrammes.
But the officers waited until Tuesday night in vain without knowing the cash in foreign and local currencies had been “stolen”.
According to police and officials from Wells Fargo, the guard had been escorted to Eldoret by armed police and boarded a plane headed to Nairobi.
He was supposed to be picked up by the escort at an agreed gate. He however told police he was kidnapped by unknown gunmen upon arrival at JKIA and later dumped in Karen area.
The suspect walked to Karen police station where he surrendered saying he had been kidnapped and robbed the money that he had escorted to Nairobi.
It was then that the officers who were waiting at JKIA were informed and asked to leave.
CID director Francis Muhoro confirmed the incident saying the man is under interrogation to establish how the money went missing.
“Officers are reviewing CCTV recordings to see how the suspect moved out of the airport. They are also talking to him to get more on the said incident,” said Mr. Muhoro.
Muhoro said the suspect told police he had been kidnapped by gunmen who later robbed him the money and escaped to unknown destination. He added they were yet to confirm with the bank on the exact amount involved.
Preliminary findings show the suspect, upon arrival at Eldoret, he made a call using his mobile phone and switched it off.
He later switched it on near Karen police station where he went to report the loss of the money.
He is said to have used a different gate to leave the airport and avoided the one they had agreed to be picked up and it is not clear if he was by then kidnapped.
Police say the incident could be an inside job.
The incident came weeks after a gang broke into Chase Bank headquarters in Nairobi and robbed more than Sh25 million. Two suspects have since been arrested and charged in court over the incident.
Despite the strong room fitted with a smoke machine and detector and other security measures, no alarm was raised when the incident happened.
The gang used a gas cylinder and welding machine to break through doors to the strong room where the cash in local and foreign currencies was stored.
Another gang stormed Paramount Bank and robbed more than Sh3 million in an attack in Westlands.