NLC to give decision on DP Ruto’s Weston Hotel ‘by February’
- Before the construction of DP Ruto’s Weston Hotel, the land was home to the KCAA’s central stores where equipment and spares were kept.
- The plot had been earmarked by the authority for the construction of its headquarters.
- The commission will decide whether or not the current title deed that gives ownership to Weston Hotel Ltd should be revoked.
Deputy President William Ruto will know the fate of Weston Hotel by February next year when the National Land Commission completes investigating claims that the land on which it stands was illegally acquired.
During a public hearing on the matter, Kenya Civil Aviation Authority said the land adjacent to Wilson Airport was illegally handed to a private developer.
According to documents before the commission, the transfer of this land from public to private utility took effect on August 30, 2002 when it was allocated to Priority Limited just months to that year’s general election.
In January 2003, the then PS for transport and communication, Sammy Kyungu, wrote to the then Lands PS Francis Baya noting that public land had been fenced off by a private developer.
The letter to Baya, Kyungu said: “ I want to further reiterate the earlier position of this Ministry, that the said plot is not available and is among the very important inventory of assets which the Government is expected to transfer to the KCAA and should not be allocated to any other party,”.
According to the letter, the PS wanted the government plot safeguarded since it had attracted a lot of interest among private developers.
But according to KCAA’s submissions before the NLC on Wednesday October 31,2018, the ownership of the plot was transferred to a private entity against the advice of senior government officials.
“KCAA management board has never agreed to surrender this title to a private entity at any one given time,” Cyril Wayong’o- Lawyer representing KCAA told NLC.
On 13th of June 2007, Priority Limited transferred the land to Weston Hotels Limited and Monene Investment, ignoring advice from the PSs.
DP Ruto who was represented at the sitting by Senior Counsel Ahmednassir Abdullahi, however says all legal procedures were followed and the land was bought legitimately
“ There’s really no purpose of declining my client the ownership of this property when you cannot assign any blame to it…in terms of how it was acquired, the construction it paid and the history of the property subsequent to its allocation,” said Ahmednassir Abdullahi.
“My client is not from Mars, my client is a Kenyan who bought this property through a normal course and has put it into a normal use.The authority now has been given an alternative land,”
Before the construction of Deputy President William Ruto’s Weston Hotel, the land was home to the Kenya Civil Aviation Authority’s central stores where equipment and spares were kept.
The plot had been earmarked by the authority for the construction of its headquarters but of controversy is how the authority vacated the land in 2002 when it was allocated parcels elsewhere and the manner in which the then DCA stores were relocated.
NLC is probing the acquisition of the 1.7 acre piece of land by DP Ruto before the commission decides whether or not the current title deed that gives ownership to Weston Hotel Ltd should be revoked.
NLC says it will give its verdict before the expiry of the term of the current commissioners in February.
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