A front view of the co-operative bank isiolo . According to Isiolo County police commander Mr Charles Ontita, about thirty million shilling were stolen on Monday evening . Photo/Bruno Mutunga
Police have arrested nine employees of Co-operative Bank, Isiolo branch, over the theft of Sh24 million.
The employees were rounded up on Monday after a manager reported that Sh30 million had been stolen in a robbery at around 6.30pm.
“The operations manager called police to report a robbery at the bank at 18.30 hours (6.30pm) yesterday (Monday). Detectives promptly went to the bank to get details,” said Charles Ontita, the county police commander, yesterday.
However, a statement from the bank’s head of Marketing and Communication, Ngumo Kahiga, later said the branch lost Sh24 million “in an armed robbery on Monday”.
Mr Ontita said the officers arrested the staff members “because their story was not factual or convincing”.
“They told the detectives that one staff opened the door for the robbers, who entered the premises and thereafter tied them up and forced them to lie on the ground,” said the officer.
The unknown number of robbers, who were allegedly armed with AK-47 rifles, then casually walked out with the money, the employees told the police.
Guards positioned outside the bank said they heard no commotion inside the premises between 4.30pm, when the bank ended the day’s business, and the alleged time of the robbery.
“The only people present in the bank were the staff of the day. There were no customers. The security guards neither heard any commotion nor noticed anything unusual,” said Ontita.
“They told the officers the robbers were armed with AK-47 rifles but no one could describe what it (AK-47) looked like.”
Police are also wondering why no employees, who were in different cubicles, raised the alarm at the time of the alleged robbery.
In addition, no one on the packed street outside the bank, which teems with boda boda riders, taxi and bus crews, and vendors, saw or heard anything going on in the bank.
Ontita said yesterday police were analysing the bank’s CCTV footage.
“Full investigations have commenced and detectives are reviewing the CCTV footage but from initial probes, everything points to them (staff),” he added.
He said the suspects would be taken to court as investigations continued.