Millions transferred to Joseph Kabila’s allies

Joseph Kabila in 2018

Joseph Kabila was President of the Democratic Republic of the Congo from 2001 to 2019

Companies owned by family and friends of former Democratic Republic of the Congo President Joseph Kabila have raised millions of dollars of public money from their bank accounts, according to Africa’s largest information breach.

The money was transferred to the company’s account in the Congolese division of BGFI Bank.

After that, millions of dollars of cash were deducted from the account.

Mr. Kabila was the president at the time of the bank transfer.

He refused to answer our question about the transfer.

The leak contained more than 3 million documents and information on millions of transactions from BGFI (Banque Gabonaiseet Française Internationale) Banks operating in several African countries and France. Information has been obtained from the online French investigative journalism mediapart and the NGO Platform (PPLAAF) for protecting African whistleblowers.

The BBC Africa Eye has accessed evidence as part of a consortium called the Congo Holdup, coordinated by the media network European Investigative Collaborations (EIC).

The investigation raises the question of who has benefited from the conflict between remittances and possible interests.

Oil company without oil

From 2012 to 2018, the managing director of BGFI Banque RDC, BGFI’s DR Congo subsidiary, was Francis Selemani, Joseph Kabila’s adoptive brother.

Mr. Kabila’s sister, Gloria Muteyu, owned 40% of BGFI’s Democratic Republic of the Congo business, which was founded in 2010.

Sud Oil, a private company, was shown to have received approximately $ 86 million in public funding between November 2013 and August 2017.

These include at least $ 46 million from BCC, the banking regulator of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, $ 15 million from the state mining company Gécamines, and $ 1.3 million from the national election agency Ceni.

The only information the BBC found from these payment leaks was a $ 1 million invoice from Ceni for petroleum products to Sud Oil.

$ 1 million invoice from the Election Commission

Election Commission Ceni paid Sud Oil $ 1 million for petroleum products.

The BBC found no evidence that Sud Oil was trading petroleum products at the time.

From 2013 to 2018, Selemani’s wife, Aneth Lutale, owned 80% of Sud Oil, and Mrs. Mteyu owned the remaining 20%.

Millions of dollars have been transferred from SudOil’s BGFI account to another private company’s BGFI account. Some of these were owned by relatives or colleagues of Mr. Kabila, who was president from 2001 to 2019.

One of these companies, Kwanza Capital, was owned by Congolese businessman Pascal Kinduelo with a majority and Sud Oil was a minority shareholder. Kinduelo was then chair of the BGFI Bank RDC.

Kinduelo was also the former owner of Sud Oil before the transfer of ownership.

Research has shown that banks allow a large number of large cash withdrawals from SudOil accounts, including $ 6 million. The law allows you to withdraw up to $ 10,000 in cash per day. This restriction can only be violated for specific documented purposes, such as national emergencies or defensive reasons.

The BBC Africa Eye did not find any evidence in the leak that the correct procedure was performed in these cases. These cash withdrawals from Sud Oil accounts have reached at least $ 50 million over four years. When the money was withdrawn, it is believed to be untraceable.

Audit confirmed “very high risk”

Our research confirms that from 2013 to 2018, Sud Oil includes one employee, managing director David Ezekiel, and a small office in the capital Kinshasa as an address. rice field. In October 2013, Sud Oil purchased a real estate complex in the capital for $ 12 million and set up a company there.

We have also signed a contract with BGFI Banque RDC to provide new vehicles to several senior management positions, including Selemani. Charged $ 70,000 to offer his four-wheel drive vehicle.

BBC Africa Eye found no evidence of other business activities.

The investigation accessed an internal BGFI audit completed in July 2018 and strongly criticized the activities of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The audit was not intended to be published.

We gave a “very high risk” score to a subsidiary of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. He also mentioned conflicts of interest in working with customers and lack of integrity and transparency in the declaration of compliance.

In the audit, Mr. Selemani was named with at least 16 conflicts of interest declared, including links to private companies that have accounts in banks. We also focused on some high value transactions by Sud Oil.

Two weeks after the report was completed, Selemani was transferred to a new position at BGFI’s headquarters in Gabon. He reportedly received $ 1.4 million by leaving the BGFI Banque RDC. He is reported to have left BGFI in November 2018.

Sud Oil changed ownership in 2018 and Kwanza Capital was closed in the same year. It is understood that Mrs. Mteyu has abandoned a 40% stake in BGFI Banque RDC.

The BBC Africa Eye has contacted BGFI, Joseph Kabila, Francis Selemani, Anesultare, David Ezekiel and Gloria Muteyu for information contained in the leak. No one answered our question. I also contacted Pascal Kinduelo but refused to answer.

Gécamines and the BCC did not respond to the BBC’s response request.

Corneille Nanger, the head of Seni at the time of the deal with Sudoil, refused to comment on the payment, citing Congressional Confidentiality Rules. Nangaaa added that a new management team has been assigned to the electoral body.

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