The Government has intensified the crackdown on betting firms in a bid to block one of the channels out-of-favour Deputy President William Ruto has been using to mint millions of shillings for the 2022 presidential campaigns, we can now report.
According to highly placed sources, Ruto bought shares in Betin, which has its origins in Italy, when it set foot in Kenya through his daughter, June Chepchirchir who holds a senior rank of the second counselor in the Kenyan embassy in Rome, Italy.
Betin Kenya shareholders include Coast-based Italian millionaires Domenico Giovando and Leandro Giovando – both managing directors of the betting company.
Other shareholders are Mauritius-based Samson Capital and Joseph Yogo, who was suspected to be another front for the Deputy President in the betting firm.
Dominic Giovando is Managing Director of Eurobet Italia, a subsidiary of Gala Coral Limited, operating as Sportbook Company.
The company was founded in 2006. It is in this company that Ruto acquired shares in Betin.
Insiders add that the DP acquired the shares in December 2018 when he toured Italy allegedly to woo investors.
This was at the same time the Italian firm at the heart of the dams’ scandal, CMC di Ravenna was making huge payments to powerful politicians and government officials.
Over Sh21 billion is said to have vanished into thin air in the dams’ scandal, part of which ended in the DP’s pockets.
Sources say Ruto used his kickback, which was paid through an Italian bank, to buy shares at Betin and other companies.
This explains the huge investments that Betin made where it has even hired football star McDonald Mariga and former TV presenter Joey Muthengi as brand ambassadors.
Mariga, a former Harambee Stars midfielder, agreed to a multi-million shilling deal to become Betin’s brand ambassador.
This further explained why DP Ruto handpicked Mariga as Jubilee flag bearer for Kibra by-election.
Betin was being targeted by the state after it emerged that the DP was using the company to launder dirty money suspected to be proceeds of corruption which he intends to use in the 2022 presidential campaign.