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Co-op Bank employees, client in an account access dispute

By Kamau Muthoni | Jan 26th 2022 | 2 min read
By Kamau Muthoni | January 26th 2022

Two Co-operative Bank employees now risk jail or a fine of Sh200,000 for declining to allow a man access his late mother’s account.

George Mwaura Ndegwa has sued Jeremiah Nyalala, a service manager, and Elizabeth Karinga claiming that they disobeyed court orders allowing him to access Jenifer Muthoni Ndegwa’s account as the administrator.

Nyalala and Karinga, however, deny any wrongdoing, arguing that Mwaura never specified what they were to do or state the amount of money he wanted to withdraw.

"It is therefore misleading and incorrect to state that the bank or the first or second respondent (Nyalala and Karinga) being the bank's officers have deliberately or in any manner disobeyed the orders of this honourable court," replied Nyalala.

Nyalala asserts that they are willing to obey the court orders adding that Mwaura has not proved his claims before the court.

According to Mwaura, the court issued orders in December last year in order for the administrator to settle debts accrued by the estate.

In his application which the bank is also listed as an interested party, Mwaura claims that the respondents declined to obey the orders of the court even after being served.

Mwaura claims that he is unable to pay his sibling's school fees and pay rent for businesses that the deceased was running.

“The disobedience of the grant has greatly and continues to prejudice the estate of the deceased to the extent that the estate’s property has been seized pursuant to a distress of rent and may be imminently auctioned and school fees remain unpaid,” argued Mwaura.

The contention between Mwaura and Co-op Bank employees is how much he should withdraw from the account. The two are of the view that the order should have specified how much money is needed in order to allow them to act.

Nyalala, in his email to Mwaura and copied to Karinga, indicated that the grant issued by the court had no specified amount of money to be withdrawn. He asked him to amend the same.

“We are in receipt of your letter addressed to us in respect to the above subject matter. However, the limited grant has not specified the amount being withdrawn for the said account to enable us to proceed. Kindly have the necessary amendments done to enable us to proceed,” said Nyalala.

Muthoni died on May 8, 2020. In her lifetime, she owned and ran a guesthouse, a bar, and a student’s hostel trading in the name Samma Rays Annex Guest House.

Her son states in his court papers that the business requires Sh2.7 million rent. According to him, the landlord has already raised distress for rent.

Muthoni had a bank account at Co-operative Bank, Stima Plaza branch.

The case will be heard on May 5.

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