Gov’t yet to recover Rwf7bn lost in MFIs

Anti- graft bodies are yet to recover a total of Rwf7bn embezzled from defunct Micro Finance Institutions (MFIs), nearly five years down the road, The New Times has learnt.An on-going audit has, so far, indicated that about Rwf5bn was unaccounted for in the year 2006. As a result, nine MFIs were ordered to close down.
Central Bank Governor Francois Kanimba
Central Bank Governor Francois Kanimba

Anti- graft bodies are yet to recover a total of Rwf7bn embezzled from defunct Micro Finance Institutions (MFIs), nearly five years down the road, The New Times has learnt.

An on-going audit has, so far, indicated that about Rwf5bn was unaccounted for in the year 2006. As a result, nine MFIs were ordered to close down.

But the interests on the Rwf5 billion kept accumulating. It now stands at about Rwf2billion, which puts the total loss at Rwf7billion.

According to the Ministry of Justice, efforts are there to recover the money and all information regarding those involved is available.

A team, comprising the police, prosecution, Supreme Court, Rwanda Revenue Authority, Ministries of Justice, Finance and Internal Security - was mandated to recover the funds

The Governor of the National Bank of Rwanda, François Kanimba, has warned that defaulters have limited time to refund the money.

 “Though, the MFIs have issues themselves, the defaulters have to refund the money. There is no excuse,” Kanimba said, adding that generally, MFIs need re-direction to avoid similar problems.

Districts leaders have also been approached to help recover the money.

The Rwf7bn was stolen or mismanaged by either leaders or clients of the defunct microfinance institutions.

“Their assets will be traced and attached. Some greedy people obtained loans and deposited invalid cheques as security,” Police said.

Several MFIs were forced to shut down in 2006 after they ran short of deposits. The Government intervened compensating the people who had lost their deposits.

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