CEO Jane Mugo’s mismanagement of the once giant Bingwa Sacco is the talk of Kerugoya town today
The Cooperative movement forms a core part of Kenya’s financial sector, said to be one of the largest in Sub-Saharan Africa. Within this booming cooperative sector, there exists Sacco’s whose boards of management have performed exceptionally well; some have however led their respective Sacco’s down down, sinking with millions of shillings belonging to struggling members.
The case of the once-thriving Bingwa Sacco based in Kerugoya town, comes to mind when one talks of struggling Sacco’s in the country, Bingwa Sacco thrived as an entity during the tenure of long-serving chairman the late Cyrus Njiru. Mr Njiru’s unfortunate demise in 2019 left the Sacco in the hands of a board of management that comprised of seven members, which is currently divided right in the middle, with a section of them accusing current MD Jane Mugo of running down the Sacco through mismanagement.
The CEO’s actions have led to the loss of millions of shillings of Sacco money on advertisements, skewed procurement, the installation of banking software systems and the expansion of the Sacco headquarters whose contracts were all awarded to firms said to be associated with members her family
The Weekly Vision contacted the CEO Jane Mugo through WhatsApp massages for her side of the story but received no feedback from her. The board has called on The Ministry of Cooperative Development and The Sacco Authority Regulating Authority (SASRA) to move in and stop the rot before matters get out of hand.
A section of the board at the 190,000 strong member farmers Sacco’s has demanded the immediate removal from office of MD Jane Mugo, citing mismanagement, overstaying in office and failure to call for fresh elections. The management under her has left members a frustrated lot; some have resolved to move in numbers to a rival microfinance organization, Greenland Fedha.
Her mismanagement of the Sacco has also led to a colossal loss of close to Ksh. 1.2 billion in liquidity and high-interest rates in loans. The Sacco faces serious financial distress due to loan default accessioned by members who have since moved to rival Saccos.
Another major contention is that Jane Mugo’s unilaterally launched a raffle dubbed TAJIRIKA NA BINGWA PROMOTION against advising and dissenting board members, leading to the loss of millions of shillings of Sacco money on advertisements, skewed procurement, the installation of banking software systems and the expansion of the Sacco headquarters whose contracts were all awarded to firms associated to family members.
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