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State to reposes acquired Miwani land

By Moses Nyamori | October 15th 2020

Police officers patrol the disputed prime land owned by Asian families and the defunct Miwani Sugar factory along the Kisumu-Nandi border. Security officials have been put on high alert along the border after more groups claimed ownership of the land. [File, Standard]

The government has begun the process of repossessing 10,000 acres of land belonging to Miwani Sugar Company that was acquired by a private firm.

The Ministry of Agriculture yesterday termed the purported acquisition of the land by Crossley Holdings Limited as irregular and fictitious.

Agriculture Principal Secretary Hamadi Boga told the National Assembly’s Agriculture Committee that the ministry was liaising with that of Lands to revert the land to the miller before the planned leasing.

He said the legal team and the receiver-manager of the miller held a meeting last month at Ardhi House with Lands PS Nicholas Muraguri to discuss how to revert the land to the company for cane farming.

“The PS (Muraguri) has directed that we immediately lodge the original title together with the supporting documents so that provisional Title issued to Crossley Holdings Limited can be cancelled and to pave way for the transfer to Miwani Sugar (1989) Limited,” Mboga told the committee.

Seeking compensation

Crossley Holdings Limited has laid claim to the land LR No 7545/3 that is currently occupied by illegal settlers after the miller stopped operations. The firm moved to court to demand compensation for alleged illegal encroachment of the land.

In the suit filed by Senior Counsel James Orengo, Crossley Holdings Limited is seeking an eviction order of the settlers and Sh6 billion for special damages.

The firm is seeking compensation of Sh4.6 billion as the current market value of the land.

But documents tabled before the committee chaired by MP Silas Tiren (Moiben) show the land was fraudulently sold to the firm in December 2007 following a court order in 1993.

But the sale was later vacated after it emerged that it did not follow the law.

In June 2008, the miller proceeded to court where the acquisition was declared null and void.

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