Banking Snafu takes Social Media Casualty in Kenya

mistake concepts, with oops message on keyboard.

This week has been quite the ride on social media and it was centered around the banking industry, specifically towards Chase Bank. The bank was put under receivership thanks to massive withdrawals done within 2 days which left it without liquidity to operate with.

As you may know now, the Central Bank of Kenya released a press release where they mentioned social media as one of the reasons why Chase Bank was put under receivership. The press release about the decision by the regulator was mentioned in the 4th paragraph:

 Chase Bank Limited experienced liquidity difficulties, following innacurate social media reports and the stepping aside of two of its directors. Consequently, it was not able to meet its financial obligations on April 6, 2016.

This move by CBK was a major talking point on social media and now there is a new development in the mix where the country’s Inspector General of Police released a press statement on Twitter:

In the meantime, following the disclosures regarding misconduct on the part of the said bank directors and senior offices, some unscrupulous members of the public have taken to social media to spread unfounded rumours and conjecture aimed at causing unnecessary fear and panic.

That is not all, they went ahead to divulge the person who was thereby arrested due to his social media use:

It is one thing to alert acquaintances about matters that are truthful and factual, but we shall not allow persons driven by malicious considerations to peddle falsehoods to mislead members of the public.In this respect, we have arrested one David Mukunzi Zawadi to face the relevant charges related to misuse of social media to disseminate falsehoods about the banking sector.

Reports of people being arrested over social media usage is not news but this is the first case we’ve heard that is related to a bank being brought under receivership. As the press release advices: “We accordingly wish to caution members of the public to be wary of such messages and refrain from disseminating the same, lest they fall afoul of the law.”