Nigerian fintech Flutterwave is once again in the Kenyan courts for the wrong reasons. Early Tuesday, the High Court of Kenya allowed the freezing of a further Sh400.6 million belonging to the company after the Assets Recovery Agency (ARA) linked the money to card fraud and money laundering.
For the good part of this year, Flutterwave has been in constant contest with Kenyan authorities over money held in different banks alleged to have been obtained illegally. This is the second time the company in less than six months that the company’s accounts have been frozen on grounds of fraud and money laundering.
In July, the court allowed the ARA to freeze the company’s money held in different banks. The money includes KSh5.3 billion held at Guaranty Trust Bank (GTB), Sh1.4 billion at Equity bank and other millions at Ecobank. Other accounts belonging to 56 companies were also affected by this earlier order.
The Sh400.6 million frozen on Tuesday is held at UBA Bank, one account at Access Bank and 19 M-Pesa Paybill numbers.
The application presented before justice Grace Nzioka barred the company from withdrawing, transferring or dealing with the money, pending further investigations by ARA.
The Central Bank of Kenya (CBK), through governor Patrick Njoroge, has also raised a red flag on the company. In July, the Governor said that the company is not licensed to operate as a Payment Service Provider (PSP) in the country, a statement which Flutterwave confirmed and said that it operates in the country through partnerships with licensed providers.
Flutterwave launched in 2016 and is one of Africa’s highly successful fintechs. On the accusations of engaging in fraud and money laundering, the company has never provided a comprehensive communication to clarify the situation, apart from a statement that said the company earns its profits from commissions charged on transactions.