United Democratic Alliance (UDA) deputy presidential running mate Rigathi Gachagua has sued a retired civil servant over a parcel of land near Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) worth Sh1.5 billion.
Mr Gachagua says Mr John Michael Ohas illegally obtained a title deed in December 2019 and registered it in his company’s name, Columbus Two Thousand Ltd.
Mr Ohas had initially sued the Mathira MP seeking a revocation of his title deed, claiming it was fraudulent but he allegedly withdrew the case last month to defeat Mr Gachagua’s plan for a counter-suit.
“After tampering with the records at the Lands office and illegally obtaining the second title and thereby purportedly extinguishing the plaintiff’s title from the records, the defendants then withdrew the suit without the same being determined on merits,” he said through his lawyer Philip Nyachoti.
Bought land for Sh24 million
Mr Gachagua says he purchased the land for Sh24 million from Mr Peter Nduati and Ms Pauline Muringe who owned it through Karandi Farm Ltd. He says the duo were allocated the land in 1999 for Sh554,000.
The MP says the land is currently charged at Equity Bank over a loan of Sh200 million.
Mr Ohas, a former director of physical planning in the Ministry of Lands, had alleged in his case that he was allocated the plot in 1994 by former President Daniel Moi. He says he later learnt the land had been transferred to Wamunyoro Investment Ltd, where the MP and his wife are listed as directors.
Mr Ohas later sought the intervention of the National Land Commission (NLC) in April 2017. The NLC upheld the title in favour of Wamunyoro Investment Ltd and gazetted it in the Kenya Gazette on July 17, 2017.
Mr Gachagua says the NLC’s decision was later affirmed by the High Court in November 2020 but Mr Ohas filed another case but withdrew it in June 2022.
He now wants the court to declare him the owner of the property. He is also seeking damages.