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Nakumatt landlord wants Atul jailed

By Joackim Bwana | January 25th 2020
Nakumatt Holdings Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer Atul Shah.

Former Nakumatt landlord Ideal Location has gone after the supermarket’s managing director Atul Shah over Sh74 million rent arrears.

In a notice to show cause heard before Deputy Registrar Tom Ogweno, Ideal Location lawyer Willis Oluga wants Mr Shah jailed for failure to pay Sh74,438,765 as ordered by the High Court in Mombasa.

Ideal Location Director Anish Doshi said Shah had guaranteed payment of Sh39 million rent.

“While Nakumatt Supermarket is under administration, there is no reason why execution should not issue against Shah to the extent of his guarantee, save for the fact that costs have not been ascertained,” he said.

Doshi said they intended to use the rent arrears to pay off a Sh545 million loan owed to Prime Bank and that the bank would institute recovery of Nyali City Mall, which was used as security for the loan.

Nakumatt owed creditors more than Sh35 billion by the time it was placed under administration on January 22, 2019.

In March 2018, Justice Charles Yano issued a decree that allowed Ideal Location to evict Nakumatt from the mall over Sh27 million rent arrears. Justice Yano found Nakumatt in breach of the sub-lease agreement dated June 14, 2009.

Yesterday, Nakumatt’s lawyer D. Ngonze said Atul had lodged an appeal at the Supreme Court and should therefore not pay the money.

Nakumatt moved to the Appellate Court in Mombasa to appeal the orders by Yano that allowed the eviction.

Ngonze argued that the judge failed to take note of the fact that Nakumatt was put under administration and there was an insolvency case ongoing at the High Court in Nairobi.

Shah maintains that they were illegally evicted from the premises where they were the anchor tenants.

Nakumatt Supermarket has since denied owing Ideal Location the said rent arrears. The retailer is on the other hand seeking compensation for stock damages during the eviction.

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