Taj Mall owner joins politics to protect business

Rameshchandra Govind Gorasia. [David Odongo, Standard]

Taj Mall managing director Rameshchandra Govind Gorasia has declared that he will vie for the Nairobi Senate seat.

The embattled businessman, whose flagship project in Embakasi was nearly demolished during the expansion of Outering Road, says his desire to join politics is to tame rogue government agencies who have no respect for businesses and investors.

“If I join the Senate, I will be part of the Government and can move measures, through Parliament, to create policies that favour business people, tame graft, and create a conducive environment for business owners,” he says.

“After all it is business owners who run the economy. When government agencies want to fight such investors, then the economy will grind to a halt,” Gorasia adds.

He has paid platinum membership fees to the Wiper Party and insists that he will not spend more than Sh2 million in his bid to became the county’s second senator.

“I am going to the Senate to work, not to steal from Kenyans, so I see no reason why I should spend millions in campaigns. I hope Nairobi residents vote for me and I promise them that I will effect real tangible change in the city,” he says, adding that the money will be spent on posters, T-shirts, and fuel for campaign vehicles.

“I won’t give handouts to voters or bribe party officials or polling clerks, like other politicians. I am going to create change in the Senate, so I have to get there in a clean way,” says the businessman.

His investment, Taj Mall, had been earmarked for demolition but got a reprieve after the Kenya Urban Roads Authority announced that the mall would be spared after the Eastern Bypass was re-designed. The National Land Commission had revoked Taj Mall’s title deed in 2013 after it received a request from the Kenya Urban Roads Authority claiming that the mall was built on a road reserve.

Gorasia has, however, maintained that the mall to be brought down.