Wells Fargo in court battle over operating license

In Summary

•The security firm said it had provided all the requisite documents but PSRA has refused to clear them.

•Wells Fargo expresses concern that there is a risk its customers will terminate their contracts

Security firm Wells Fargo has challenged the Private Security Regulatory Authority's (PSRA) decision to deny it a license for the past two years.

In court papers, the firm claims it made an application in March 2020 for a license to operate as a private security service provider but to date this is pending.

However, Justice Jairus Ngaah declined to issue them with an order of stay but instead allowed them to file a motion compelling the regulator to issue them with a temporary license.

He said he would not certify the application as urgent and further declined the request for interim relief, but allowed the case to proceed.

“Although the respondent is alleged to have delayed in processing the applicants license, there is no sufficient reason given why Wells Fargo did not move the court for leave at the earliest opportunity possible,” the order reads.

The case will be mentioned on February 1. 

In its application Wells Fargo wants the Private Security Regulatory Authority ordered to issue it with a licence to operate as a private security service provider.

“There is a risk that Wells Fargo customers will terminate their contracts with them due to failure to provide a license to operate as a private security services provider,” read court papers.

Lawyer Lawson Ondieki says the Wells Fargo MD Richard Garth Baudry has informed him that this could lead to the collapse of their business and loss of 3,000 jobs.

It said despite follow-ups on the status of the application, the regulator has been mum on the matter for two years and ten months.

It is their argument that the authority’s failure and refusal to issue the company with a license under the act or communicate with them on the status of the application is unreasonable and unlawful.

“The authority’s failure and refusal to process Well Fargo’s licensing application has exposed it to legal action and to loss of business as its customers are concerned about being accused of engaging an unlicensed firm,” reads court papers.

Wells Fargo claims that on January 10 this year it received emails from some customers drawing its attention to a gazette notice alleged to have been published by the Authority listing the licensed private security service providers and pointing out that Wells Fargo were not part of that list.

It claims that its customers are requesting confirmation that the company is licensed if they are to continue engaging its private security services.




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