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Salat family embroiled in Sh100m property tussle

 Kanu Secretary-General Nick Salat during an interview at his office in Nairobi on May 19, 2022. [Boniface Okendo, Standard]

The family of politician Nick Salat has been caught up in a controversy over a Sh100 million property dispute in Nairobi's Kileleshwa.

In a public notice, Telposta Pension Scheme said the prime property was part of assets vested to it following the collapse of the Kenya Posts and Telecommunications Corporation.

"It has come to the notice of Telposta Pension Scheme Trustees Registered that certain persons are purporting to own and/or solicit offers from unsuspecting members of the public for purchases and/or sale of the property and/or apartment units within the property," said the caveat emptor placed in local dailies.

The scheme warned that the property, known as Nairobi Block 23/107 and situated along Mwingi Road/Nyeri Road, Kileleshwa, had never been sold, allotted, transferred, assigned, leased, charged or conveyed to a third party.

On the property lies an eleven-storey commercial development of over 40 units registered under the name Josephine Chesang Salat who is stepmother of Nick Salat.

Telposta said it had written to numerous government entities over the years concerning the property including the Ministry of Lands, the National Land Commission and the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission.

This month, EACC wrote to Telposta acknowledging receipt of the scheme's complaint letter regarding the property.

"Please note that due to the complex nature of corruption and economic crimes investigations and the need to gather accurate facts before making recommendations for appropriate action, completion of these investigations takes a while," said EACC Deputy Director, Reports and Data Management Dr Susan Kinyeki.

The property is subject to ongoing court proceedings being Nairobi ELC No. E046 of 2022 (Telposta Pension Scheme Trustees Registered v. Josephine Chesang Salat, Chief Land Registrar and Vernonia Apartments Limited) said the public notice.

The scheme said the court had issued an order of inhibition prohibiting the registration of any dealing whatsoever on the property pending hearing and determination of the main suit.

In the suit, Telposta had sought compensations assessed at the prevailing market value of the property, damages for trespass, revocation of the title held by the first defendant and return of the property, among other orders.

Telposta Pension Scheme Chief Executive Peter Rotich declined to comment on the matter when The Standard reached out.

"The matters are before the court and I can't comment on it," he said.

The property suit pits Telposta Pension Scheme against Josephine Chesang Salat (first defendant) and the chief land registrar (second defendant).

The then Minister of Finance had in 2001 vested the property to the scheme. It later emerged in 2013 that despite the vesting order the property is registered under Josephine Chesang Salat (first defendant) and construction of a Telposta says in court documents.

This, says the scheme, was illegal as the property was designated and alienated for a specific public use.

Over the years, Telposta Pension Scheme has been renewing efforts to reclaim its grabbed assets across the country valued at billions. This includes enlisting the help of the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) to investigate how some of its vested properties were illegally acquired by influential individuals.

Telposta is a closed pension scheme where members no longer contribute but it still pays out pension benefits.

The scheme says the grabbing of its properties deprives pensioners of their lawful rights by denying it the ability to generate income from and meet its obligations to them.

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