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Ruaraka land tussle: Swazuri and NLC sued for contempt

Wednesday May 2 2018

Mohammed Swazuri

National Land Commission chairman Mohammed Swazuri. He has defended his record at the commission. PHOTO | FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

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Activists Okiya Omtatah and Nyakina Wycliffe Gisebe have filed a contempt case against the National Land Commission for paying Sh1.5 billion to two agencies against a court order.

Mr Omtatah and Mr Giseba sued the Prof Muhammad Swazuri-led commission over the payment to Afrison Export Import Limited and Huelands Limited.


The payment was part of Sh3.3 billion compensation for 96 acres, LR No 7879/4, owned by Ruaraka High and Drive-in Primary School in Nairobi.

In their case, the two petitioners state that the payment was deliberately done by officials of NLC against Justice Samson Okong’o’s order issued December 13, 2016.

The judge, they state, prohibited release of the funds pending determination of their case.


They claim that the land agency paid out the cash after National Assembly Lands committee launched investigations into the two firms’ acquisition of the public property.

Mr Omtatah and Mr Giseba have also sued Afrison Export Import Limited, Huelands Limited, Kenya Urban Roads Authority, Lands Cabinet secretary and Attorney-General over the payout.

Continental Credit Finance Limited (in receivership), Official Receiver and Interim Liquidation, Telkom Kenya, Nairobi County and the Director of Public prosecutions are listed as interested parties.


They are seeking among other orders that the directors, chief executive officers and employees of the two firms and NLC be cited for contempt and jailed for six months or more.

Mr Omtatah and Mr Giseba are also asking the judge to deny the two private firms and NLC audience in the case pending before the court unless they refund the public money.

They also want former Education Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i and Principal Secretary Bilio Kipsang to be cited for contempt for allegedly colluding with Afrison Export Import Limited directors to initiate the process of acquiring the land.

Mr Omtatah and Mr Giseba also want Dr Matiang'i and Dr Kipsang found culpable for sending three letters, dated February 7 and March 17, 2017 and January 15, 2018, to Prof Swazuri to facilitate the parcels' acquisition.

The petitioners accuse Prof Swazuri of sending a reply to Dr Matiangi and Dr Kipsang to transfer Sh3.2 billion to Afrison Export Import Limited and Huelands Limited.


They also want Prof Swazuri indicted for sending a second letter, dated January 25, 2018, to the Education ministry to transfer Sh1.5 billion to the Afrison Export Import Limited’s bank account.

Mr Omtatah and Mr Giseba also target Dr Tom Konyimbih, Ms Emma Njogu and Mr Joash Oindo, officials of Ruaraka High and Drive-in Primary schools, whom they want held culpable for the payment.

They also want NLC officials Salome Murumbi and Francis Karimi Mugo found culpable of requesting the National Bank to transfer Sh1.5 billion to Whispering Palm Estate—a firm linked to the two private agencies involved in the case.

Mr Omtatah and Mr Giseba also want Afrison Export Import and Whispering Palm Estate Limited directors— Francis Mburu, Mark Mungai Mburu and Justin Mungai Mburu— found culpable.