UAE Authorities Launch an Investigation Against AMAL EXPRESS

Published On: Friday, June, 21 2013 - 21:01:34 This post has been viewed 4251 times

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No one is certain about how long this investigation will continue, how it will pan out and what sanctions, if any, will be imposed on AMAL EXPRESS.

Mogadishu (Sunatimes) The UAE Central Bank has launched on Wednesday June 19 an investigation against AMAL EXPRESS, one of the largest Somali money transfer companies.

Well informed sources has revealed to that a team of UAE Central Bank investigators has visited the headquarters of AMAL EXPRESS in Dubai to conduct a preliminary examination of this company’s records and operations. After this, the investigation will move to the headquarters of the Central Bank in the capital Abu Dhabi, where senior AMAL EXPRESS officials have been summoned to appear in front of Central Bank officials to explain the conduct and operation of their company.

The investigation is centred on complaints received by the Central Bank from a number of AMAL EXPRESS customers whose accounts have been frozen and their money has been withheld without any legal justification by the company. However understands that the investigation is not limited to those complaints but will venture into other areas and aspects of the company’s operations particularly deposit accounts allegedly opened by the company for its customers thereby operating as a Bank without having obtained a Banking Licence from the Central Bank.

It is understood that the Central Bank has been alerted and became aware of the existence of those deposit accounts only now following the complaints it received from aggrieved AMAL EXPRESS customers whose accounts have been frozen.

It is also understood that AMAL EXPRESS officials have denied the existence of these deposit accounts, which experts conservatively estimate to hold over 200 million dollars, while responding to questions posed by the Central Bank officials. This puts in serious doubt the security of deposits of tens of thousands of AMAL EXPRESS customers who trusted the company with their lifetime savings.

If AMAL EXPRESS is proven to have contravened the laws of the UAE by accepting deposits and operating as a Bank, it could face severe penalties that range from hefty fines to licence suspension. Either way, AMAL EXPRESS customers particularly shareholders and those who maintain accounts with the company are likely to face severe financial hardship in the coming weeks and months with the possibility of the Central Bank freezing the company’s operations in the UAE, or at minimum curtailing them to bring them in line with the UAE laws.

No one is certain about how long this investigation will continue, how it will pan out and what sanctions, if any, will be imposed on AMAL EXPRESS.

Waagacusub.comcontacted the CEO of AMAL EXPRESS Mr Ahmed Warsame in Dubai for information and clarification but he refused to take our calls. As usual we will observe our duty by keeping you posted on the developments of this sensitive case.

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