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New Era For CMA As James Ndegwa Announces His Exit

James Maina Ndegwa. [PHOTO/ COURTESY]

Capital Markets Authority (CMA) chairman James Ndegwa has announced his exit from the authority after serving for six years.

This marks the end of a protracted battle at the authority that saw him fight court cases through his second term since March 28, 2018.

“This is my last week as the chairman of the authority’s board. It has been a great honour to serve in this position for two terms and to work with all the various stakeholders in the capital markets industry, our peer regulators, my colleagues on the board and the highly committed team at the authority,” he said during a closed virtual CMA forum on Tuesday.

In January 2020, Omtata filed a petition in the High Court seeking to oust the CMA board led by Ndegwa over irregular and unconstitutional appointments that entail conflict of interest.

Others who would exit the regulator if Omtatah’s petition succeeds include John Kipkosgei Birech, Freshia Mugo Waweru, George Mose Moibi, Thomas Nzioki Kibua, Christine Okoth and Peter Mungai, who are said to be beneficiaries of a flawed appointment process by the then Cabinet Secretary for Treasury Henry Rotich.

In the petition filed by Omtatah, Ndegwa was accused of being a player in a market that he regulates, which amounts to conflict of interest to the “extent that he is a public official who regulates his private businesses”.

Ndegwa is the Chairman of First Chartered Securities (FCS). FCS owns ICEA Lion, which owns ICEA Lion Asset Managers, which manages the ICEA Money Market Fund, which is regulated by the CMA.

ICEA Lion recently acquired Stanlib, hence, Stanlib Money Market Fund is also under ICEA lion. Stanlib Money Market Fund is regulated by CMA. FCS and it’s afflictions own a 12 percent stake in NCBA, which is listed in the Nairobi Securities Exchange. Hence, NCBA is also regulated by CMA.

Read: Conflic of Interest? CMA Chairman James Ndegwa Appoints Former CEO Paul Muthaura As COO to ICEA Lion

NCBA also runs NCBA money market fund, which is also regulated by CMA.

The Ndegwa family also owns a controlling 50.9 percent stake in the Unga Group which is also listed with the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE).

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Written by Francis Muli

Follow me on Twitter @francismuli_. Email francis@kahawatungu.com

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