Helb Take Loan Defaulters to Court to Recover Ksh10.5 billion owed to it by beneficiaries.
The Higher Education Loans Board (HELB) has begun taking persistent loan defaulters to court in an attempt to recoup around Ksh10.5 billion in loans.
Charles Ringera, the HELB’s Chief Executive Officer, stated that the government agency has decided to pursue legal action against 109,000 beneficiaries whose debt has been labeled as “hardcore,” meaning it has not been serviced in over ten years.
He went on to say that the loans board had already filed cases against five hardcore defaulters, despite the fact that it had originally targeted seven.
Ringera noted that HELB takes drastic actions ten years after the defaulter is listed with credit bureaus and private debt collectors have failed.
Helb Take Loan Defaulters to Court
“When private debt collectors are unable to trace or get where you are, on about the tenth year, which is actually supposed to be the life of the loan, we now start taking prosecution aspects,” Ringera said.
HELB is attempting to recoup at least Ksh4.9 billion two years after repayments were halted because to the economy’s destabilization caused by the Covid-19 outbreak.
Even after several attempts by the government agency to recover the funds, some of the beneficiaries chose not to pay their loans, according to the loans board.
“We chase one another for like three years before now we say this debt is now approaching hardcore. However, if during the intervening period, you have actually been able to see us, then nobody will list you.
“On KRA, you can see they are paying taxes, on NTSA you can see they are buying their Subarus. This is how we are chasing one another. That is why we become a little bit hard in terms of even thinking about prosecution,” Ringera explained.
HELB forwards a defaulter’s details to private debt collectors after the seventh year.
In 2021, the student loans board put 85,000 Kenyans on notice stating that they risked getting listed on CRB if they fail to pay their loans.