A businessman has lost a 2.7-acre piece of land after the High Court declared that it belongs to the government.
Mike Maina, who owned the land through his company Muthithi Investment, had been allocated the parcel in Murang’a town 24 years ago.
The Environment and Land Court Judge Grace Kemei placed a permanent injunction on Mr Maina not to trespass into the land, which will now be set aside for the construction of a juvenile home.
The land is located next to Murang’a GK Prison. Ms Kemei said that the land had been earmarked in 1966 through a Kenya Gazette notice for the building of the home.
Maina had filed the suit listing the Commissioner for Lands, Commissioner for Prisons, Murang’a County Government and the Attorney General as respondents.
He had sought orders that to stop them from interfering with the land.
But Kemei struck out Maina’s suit, ordering that the land titled Municipality Block 2/525 be reverted to the State.
“The law protects only property that was acquired lawfully. The current title deed to this land contains a number of illegalities,” said Kemei.
She stressed that the Commissioner for Lands lacks powers to allocate public land for private use.
Kemei said she was satisfied that the land was in 1966 set aside for the establishment of a juvenile home, only to change hands in 1996.
“Public interest overrides private interests. The land was allocated to the petitioner when already it had been committed for public use,” ruled Justice Kemei.
In the proceedings, Maina informed the court that in 2013, he saw an advertisement on a local newspaper inviting the public to inspect a development plan for the establishment of the juvenile home.
It was when he moved to court seeking to stop Kenya Prisons Service from interfering with the land. Maina has been given 30 days to appeal the ruling.
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