As if losing the Kiambu Gubernatorial seat to Baba Yao wasn’t humiliating enough, former governor William Kabogo has lost a prime city plot worth Sh3.5 Billion.
This is after the High Court ruled that he had fraudulently acquired the 5.2-acre parcel of land on Mvuli Road in Nairobi’s Westlands.
Judge Elijah Abaga ordered Kabogo to surrender the plot with immediate effect. He is also required to compensate the land’s rightful owner, Aster Holdings Director Nayan Patel, with Sh100 million in damages.
Aster Holdings had sued Nairobi County Council, the Lands commissioner, the Registrar of Titles, the Attorney General and Caroget Investment (Kabogo’s firm).
“From the evidence adduced herein and the documents produced in this case, it is clear that the title by the first defendant (Nairobi County Government), which was subsequently transferred to the fifth defendant (Caroget Investment Ltd) was obtained illegally, unprocedurally and through corrupt scheme,” said the judge.
In the ruling delivered on Tuesday evening, Justice Abaga ordered Kabogo and City Hall to deliver vacant possession of the land to Patel while issuing a permanent injunction to the Registrar of Titles from accepting, acting upon, or effecting any sale, lease, charge transfer, or alienation and/or dealing in any manner whatsoever with the land.
“A declaration is hereby given that Caroget Investment Limited unlawfully and illegally occupied and took possession of the suit property and these acts amount to trespass and that Aster is entitled to the sole possession thereof. An award of Sh100,000,000 general damages to be paid by Caroget Investments,” the judge declared in a 25-page ruling.
City Hall and Kabogo have also been ordered to meet the cost of the suit estimated at Sh17 million.
The former Governor appeared before the Court in April and defended himself, saying he had applied for allocation of the land in 2007, and that it was accepted by City Hall, which granted him a 99-year lease.
He paid Sh8 million as stamp duty after his application was granted by the defunct Nairobi City Council.
In the same year, Mr Kabogo’s company invaded the property and evicted workers at the premises.
But Judge Obaga said the land was fraudulently obtained in a well-orchestrated scheme that began in 2006 and noted that Kabogo had forged documents.
He said for 14 years, Nayan Patel could not develop it because of the illegal occupation.
Before the invasion, Mr Patel had planned to build a residential hotel and an apartment on the property.
The ruling brings to an end a 10-year tussle for the city plot.