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Malindi court restrains Belgium firm in Lamu windpower tussle

By Benard Sanga | May 24th 2017
By Benard Sanga | May 24th 2017

LAMU, KENYA: The Environment and Lands Court in Malindi has halted a Belgium firm's Sh21 billion wind project in Lamu following a case filed by an American consortium that objects its construction.

The court has ordered the National Land Commission (NLC) not to allocate land to Kenwind Holdings until a case filled by the US based firm, Cordisons International, is heard and determined.

Kenwind, a subsidiary of the Belgian renewable energy giant, Elicio NV, plans to invest Sh21 billion on a 3,200 acres of land in Lamu to produce 90 MW of wind power.

But Cordisons International has gone to court to stop the investment saying the land allocated to Kenwind overlaps the 11,100 acres in Lamu where it also intends to erect wind power generation plant.

According to documents filed in the Malindi Court, Cordisons International has received more than 30 letters of approvals from all relevant government agencies and the county government of Lamu.

Cordisons International plans to invest Sh23 billion to generate 100MW wind power but  alleges that the NLC has frustrated its plans and declined to award it with land lease instruments to facilitate the investment for more than 25months after the county government of Lamu finalized approvals and instructed NLC to complete and issue Land lease instruments to the US consortium.

On January 18, 2017, Cordisons International moved to court to seek a judicial review in a suit the NLC and its chair Prof Mohamed Swazuri and the Director of Physical Planning are cited as respondents.

On Wednesday Justice A. Omollo ordered that the implementation of the Kenwind project in Kiongwe in Lamu West be suspended until the Judicial Review matter filed by Cordisons International is determined.

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