Court hands back to Moi 2,700-acre disputed land

Thursday, December 5th, 2019 00:00 |
Late retired President Moi. Photo/Courtesy

Rift Valley Development Trust, which is associated with former President Daniel arap Moi, got a relief when the Environment and Lands court in Nakuru revoked titles of 2,700 acres of land alleged to have been acquired illegally.

Justice Sila Munyao, in a ruling delivered by Justice Dalmas Ohungo, said there was no evidence the trustees who are mandated to sanction sale of the land made an approval of any purchase of the property, thus rendering the transactions illegal.  

The land hosts, among others, the Rift Valley Institute of Science and Technology (RVIST) and Technology Farm. The Trust had claimed the property  had been illegally subdivided and sold to private investors. 

The judge observed that the amalgamations of the blocks said to have originated from the farm was not undertaken lawfully directing that the land be reverted and restored to the institution declaring the subdivisions as null and void.  

“The court hereby proceeds to nullify all subdivisions of the said land and therefore order that it be reverted to the second plaintiff.

From the foregoing it will be discerned that my finding is that the Trust deserves to hold the title of the whole land and therefore cancels all titles on the said land,” ruled Munyao. 

He directed the defendants, who had initially bought the land, to surrender disputed portions and give vacant possession within 30 days from the ruling date. 

“The defendants in the suit are to surrender the land and give possession within 30 days from this ruling date,” he ruled. 

The group moved to court in 2006 seeking orders to have 2,700 acres of land restored to the expansive 5,000-acre Deloraine Farm in Salgaa and 3,000-acre Technology Farm on the outskirts of Nakuru town on grounds that it was subdivided and sold illegally noting that the process was skewed. 

Speaking after the judgement, the Trust Secretary Julius Sunkuli applauded the court’s verdict saying the journey has been long adding that the land should not have been subdivided.  

He noted that they have struggled to have the land back from individuals who some had vowed to stay put adding that they now have a chance to develop the land as they so wish to the benefit of the institution.  

Against subdivision

“We are happy with the judgement; it has been a long journey for us as a trust, we were against any subdivisions of the land and now we can get back to utilise the same accordingly to the benefit of the shareholders,” said Sunkuli. 

On her part lawyer Purity Sang said it was a success adding that they have been patient for over 13 years during the battle at the lands court. 

“This is a successful fight of justice, we have been patient for over 13 years and the court has ruled in our favour,” said Sang. 

More on National