Magnate Ventures Ltd has been accused of evading tax by under-declaring the number of billboard it owns in the country.
According to an anonymous whistle-blower who has written to the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA), Magnate Ventures has been evading taxes for the last seven years.
“Magnate Ventures Limited owns over one thousand (1,200) billboards countrywide. However, in a deliberate attempt to gain a tax benefit Magnate Ventures Limited has been declaring that it owns about one hundred (100) billboards in Nairobi county while the true position is contrary to their declarations,” write the whistle blower.
The company is owned and managed by city tycoon Stanley Kinyanjui, who is said to work with senior county officials and Nairobi governor Mike Sonko to under-declare the income of his business.
“All this has been done with the full knowledge and connivance of the Nairobi county governor Mike Sonko and the planning department at Nairobi county whom have participated in sharing out bribes given by Stanley Kinyanjui. This has resulted in the loss of over ksh3 billion in taxes to the people of Kenya,” adds the whistleblower.
This is not the first time Kinyanjui and his company are being mentioned in corruption scandals, leading to loss of revenue for taxpayers.
Last year, it was revealed that Magnate Venture was the company awarded a tender to supply security scanners at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA). However, as it emerged later, the scanners were faulty. Some of the screening machines immediately broke down after installation.
The Primary Security Screening Facility at JKIA was installed in September 2015 by an American-based firm Rapiscan System through a joint venture with Magnet Ventures Ltd.
Kenya Airports Authority (KAA) entered into tender No. KAA/ES/HQ/918/E with M/S Magnate Ventures Ltd and JV High Technologies Detection Systems (HTDS) for a sum of $5,848,226.50 (about Sh600 million), commencing March 2015.
To date, the case, which has been under investigations by the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) has never been concluded.