Names behind Wanjigi’s land case revealed

Monday, July 13th, 2020 00:00 |
Business tycoon Jimi Wanjigi. Photo/PD/file

A former clerk at the State Law office and a shadowy trader are at the centre of investigations involving an attempt to fraudulently transfer a Sh300 million piece of land belonging to prominent businessman Jimi Wanjigi.    

According to investigators, one Valentine Jelimo Kibire, a former junior clerk at the Registrar of Companies, “deliberately and fraudulently” altered the list of directors of a company, Horizon Hills Ltd, to aid three businessmen and some unscrupulous land officials to generate a title for the land located along General Mathenge Street in Westlands, Nairobi. 

Kibire, investigations show, uploaded information relating to registration particulars, memorandum and Articles of Association of Horizon Hills Ltd into the database online system at the Registrar of Companies. 

Thereafter, a city lawyer, James Maseno Anabaka of Wambua and Maseno Advocates, conducted a search for the company and obtained what detectives now refer to as “a system generated certificate” dated August 9, 2018. 

Also at the heart of the investigations is Cissy Kalunde Musembi, a 49-year old trader who once hawked shoes on Nairobi’s Kirinyaga road and who, according to investigators bought the land at a cost of Sh220 million from the three businessmen, purporting to be directors of Horizon Hills Ltd.

Those grilled by detectives from the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) are several land registrars.

They have recorded statements and provided their specimen signatures and stamp impression for forensic investigations.

Contacted yesterday, Musembi, a mother of two, protested her innocence, saying she bought the land through her lawyers, Wambua and Maseno Advocates.

“I do not even know the owners of the plot. My lawyer called and asked me if I was interested in the plot and I bought it through my lawyer.

I am an innocent buyer and I do not want any controversy,” Musembi told People Daily

Investigations being conducted by detectives from the Land Fraud Unit at the DCI headquarters, was premised on an initial report that the same piece of land, L.R No.1870/II/200, had two different titles, one held by Wanjigi and the other by Ms Musembi. 

Banker’s cheque

The Government Printer, when quizzed by detectives, disowned the title held by Musembi, terming it a forgery.

A local bank has also disowned a banker’s cheque presented by the three businessmen who allegedly sold the land to Musembi as proof of payment, terming it fake.

Detectives have also established that the businessmen, identified as David Njenga Samson Kuria, Henry Njoroge Njenga and Samuel Njuguna Chege, had on July 31, 2014 attempted to change the name of a company known as Bosorana Ltd to Horizon Hills Ltd just before the suspected forgery of the title deed took place. 

The attempt, however, hit a snag after the Registrar of Companies declined to effect the change after noticing the existence of another company with a similar name.

“The two companies bear similar names and cannot exist concurrently in our register as they are likely to cause confusion to members of the public,” reads a letter from the Assistant Registrar of Companies Joyce Koech to the three businessmen dated May 28, 2019.

Also, there was no proof of full payment of the Sh220 million for the land. 

In their statement to the detectives, former directors of Horizon Hills Ltd stated that they sold the land in question to Wanjigi’s firm, Aureum Ltd, at a cost of Sh154 million whereupon he was issued with the title deed.

They also disowned one of the transfer letters presented by the three businessmen, saying that the photos were not theirs even though the KRA PIN and the signatures belonged to them.

Musembi, however, maintains that she bought the land from Horizon Hills Ltd allegedly registered on July 2, 2004 under Certificate of Incorporation No. C110776 and whose directors were the three businessmen. But the Government Printer has told investigators that the title was a forgery.

The money was to be paid through her lawyers, Wambua and Maseno Advocates.

But she has been unable to offer any proof of payment of the Sh220 million she claims to have used to buy the land after a local bank disowned a Sh34 million banker’s cheque provided as part of the payment. 

Musembi in her statement stated that she bought the land from people only known to her lawyers.

Detectives have however established that the original Horizon Hills Ltd was registered ten years before the failed change of name from Bosorana Ltd to another entity going by the same name, Horizons Hills Ltd. 

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