BGFI Bank: Jean Dominique Okemba
The ruling Nguesso family as already mentioned is present in all sectors of the Congolese economy. Another symbol or example of the stranglehold that, the Nguessos have over the Congolese economy is Jean Dominique Okemba. Mr Okemba whose name has been severally mentioned in this book is not only the nephew of the President and his special adviser and secretary general of the Congolese national Security Council; he is equally the chairman of the board of Directors of BGFI Bank Congo Brazzaville. Logically, he is the majority shareholder, but I have not been able to know or get the financial weight and worth of his shareholding unlike that of Gloria Mteyu mentioned below which was published by Bloomberg. BGFI is another family based bank with its origin found in Gabon. In Congo Brazzaville, BGFI’s longstanding general manager is Narcisse Obiang and deputy, is Thierry Sansonnat, a Frenchman who has been offered Congolese nationality, simply because the Nguessos don’t want anybody to know all their financial transactions being carried through the bank. According to COBAC or Central African Banking Commission requirements, any bank operating within the Economic and Monetary Community of Central African States, CEMAC must have at its helms a national from one of the six member states. However, in case a non national, is at the helm of a local bank, its deputy must be a citizen from where the bank is located. In order to circumvent the latter rule, the Nguessos have decided to offer Congolese nationality to Thierry Sansonnat, who is French by nationality. The majority shareholder of Groupe BGFI Bank SA, which is present in 11 countries in west and central Africa are the Omar Bongo family. And more, the Groupe BGFI Bank SA or their local subsidiaries are the bank of choice of the ruling families in almost all countries that she has a subsidiary. According to a publication of the online edition of Blumberg of December 16th 2016, in neighbouring DRC, the chairman of the board of Directors is Gloria Mteyu. She holds 60% of the shares of BGFI Bank DRC even after its recapitalization in 2104 and which is worth $ 10 million. Her brother, Francis Selemani Mtwale is the CEO of BGFI DRC. Both Gloria and Francis are sister and brother to President Joseph Kabila.
While Jean Dominique Okemba is the majority shareholder of BGFI Bank Congo, another of his close ally: Alfred Onanga is the chairman of the Board of Director of another local bank known as Banque Congolaise de L’Habitat, BCH. Mr Onanga besides chairing the board of BCH, he doubles as Director of Congolese Customs. BGFI Bank Congo Brazzaville doesn’t singularize itself with its unique management method, but also in breaking banking rules and regulations. For while the Central African Banking Commission requires that proper vetting systems be put in place to ascertain source of any financial transactions and destinations, BGFI ignores them or fails to respect the guidelines. Hence most men and women connected to power in countries where it has opened a subsidiary prefer to have an account at BGFI. In Brazzaville, the national hydrocarbon corporation otherwise known as the SNPC has an account at BGFI Bank for all its oil transactions.
Jean Jacques Bouya
In the galaxy of the Nguesso Kleptocratic family, there is also Jean Jacques Bouya (see profile). He is the money man of the President. For any project in the country that is beyond a FCFA 1 billion, he is the only one who has the authority to manage and execute it. This has made him to become one of the richest men in Congo and with such wealth; he also nurses the ambition to become President of the Republic. Even though he is not the show and tell type of most of his cousins, it has been revealed that, behind his love for China also lies his source of his wealth. He likes to work with Chinese and Chinese companies because they are corrupt as he is. It is reported that, he is the real owner of a Chinese company called China Bridge and Road Construction that has won almost all major construction contracts recently in the Republic of Congo. An example to demonstrate the dominance of China Bridge and Construction Company, within three years, the company is reported to have won FCFA 9 billion worth of contracts from the government. And it is also reported that, all other Chinese companies operating in Congo Brazzaville must pay or bribe Jean Jacques Bouya 20% of the revenue from any contract that they might win.