Joho firm agrees out-of-court deal

The KPA lawyer said parties agreed to an out-of-court settlement.

Saturday March 12 2016

The containers inside the port of Mombasa in this picture taken on February 25, 2016. The case between Autoports Freight Terminal Limited and KPA will be mentioned on May 26. PHOTO | LABAN WALLOGA | NATION MEDIA GROUP

The containers at the Port of Mombasa on February 25, 2016. On February 11, Portside Freight Terminals Ltd was directed to file a response to KPA’s application seeking orders stopping it from suspending a licence to operate as a Customs-bonded cargo handling facility. PHOTO | LABAN WALLOGA | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

By PHILIP MUYANGA
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A freight firm associated with Mombasa Governor Hassan Joho’s family has agreed to a proposal by the Kenya Ports Authority to settle a dispute relating to nomination of containers out of court.

Autoports Freight Terminal Ltd, through Paul Buti, said there was a document indicating that there is a nomination of containers to the firm.

“In the circumstances shown, we are agreeable to the proposal made by my colleague (KPA lawyer),” Mr Buti told Mr Justice Anyara Emukule.

The KPA lawyer, Mr Nani Mungai, said parties agreed to an out-of-court settlement.

“My clients are asking for two months,” he said. “The settlement is tied to other suits. “It is proper to give time.”

The High Court had barred KPA from suspending nomination of the containers to the freight station until the hearing and determination of the case.

The firm was granted leave to apply for an order to prohibit KPA, its servants, agents, employees or any persons under it from interfering or continuing with nomination of containers to the company’s freight stations.

The court also allowed it to apply for an order (of mandamus) to compel KPA to continue nominating containers to the stations as both by law and contract obliged to.

It also allowed the applicants to apply for an order (of certiorari) for it to call for a decision by KPA contained in its letter, then quash it.

On February 11, Portside Freight Terminals Ltd was directed to file a response to KPA’s application seeking orders stopping it from suspending a licence to operate as a Customs-bonded cargo handling facility discharged.

(Read: KRA closes down two Joho family freight businesses)

COURT CONTEMPT
Mr Justice Patrick Otieno said after the firm has filed and served its response, KRA could file a supplementary affidavit.

Portside Freight Terminals Limited had on February 1 obtained orders putting on hold a decision by KRA suspending its license to operate customs bonded cargo handling facility.

The freight station was also allowed to apply for an order to prohibit KRA from carrying out searches, requesting for bank statements, seizures and other related activities unless authorized by court.

“Leave is hereby granted to the applicant to apply for an order to compel the respondent or other persons acting pursuant to its instructions to perform its duties and functions as customs officers as mandatorily required,” read part of the order issued on February 1.

The two freight stations had also filed applications seeking to have KPA acting managing director Catherine Mturi and head of litigation Addraya Dena summoned to court to answer why they should not be committed to civil jail for disobeying a court order.

They want the two senior KPA officers, on failing to show necessary cause, be both or either of them jailed for six months for contempt of court.

The case between Autoports Freight Terminal Limited and KPA will be mentioned on May 26.

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