Daily Nation (Kenya)
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Chase Bank customers will access 75 per cent of the Sh76 billion deposits locked in the troubled lender in staggered phases over a period of three years, regulators announced yesterday.The process for releasing the funds to about 3,100 affected depositors will kick off "in a matter of weeks", said Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) governor Patrick Njoroge and the Kenya Deposit Insurance Corporation (KDIC) chief executive officer Mahmoud Mohamedin a joint briefing without giving a specific timeline.

The payouts will start after the planned execution and operationalisation of the recent binding offer by the CBK to take over Chase Bank. The CBK accepted the offer on January 4, almost a year and nine months after the lender collapsed.

"This is a very good offer for the substantive resolution of Chase Bank," said Dr Njoroge at a briefing without disclosing the value of the deal."It is the first time that a carved out process is being witnessed," added Mr Mohamed (right).

Under the staggered approach, 18.75 per cent of the deposits will be placed in current accounts operated by the depositors after the deal is operationalised "in a matter of weeks"Another 18.75 per cent will be placed in savings accounts of the depositors earning 7 per cent interest.The rest of the 37.75 per cent will be available annually over a three-year period earning 7 per cent interest.

Dr Njoroge said SBM will retain "a maximum number of staff," in the deal that does not require it to retain all employees. The lender's staff count is estimated at 1,300 in about 62 of its branches.

"SBM has said it will be taking on board the maximum amount of staff. We hope everyone finds a homethey have a favourable opinion of all staff in Chase," said Dr Njoroge.

A one-off payment will be made to customers who formerly banked with the lender under an Islamic window. SBM is expected to phase it out as it does not offer it anymore, said Dr Njoroge.

Chase Bank was placed under receivership on April 7, 2016 following a run on deposits after reports of liquidity problems spread online.It was re-opened on April 27, 2016 under the management of the KDIC.

Betting firm SportPesa, investment company Centum, State-owned Kenya Ports Authority (KPA), the Kenya Tea Development Agency (KTDA), United Nations Sacco, and South Africa's hotel group City Lodge are among the institutions with large sums held at Chase Bank after it was placed under receivership.Others are Co-operative Bank of Kenyaand Rafiki Microfinance Bank, a subsidiary of Chase Bank.

The Law Society of Kenya (LSK) and thousands of small and medium enterprises also have money in the bank.