EACC wants 400 acres returned to agriculture research agency

The Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission wants a 400-acre land allocated to two private developers reverted to Kenya Agricultural Livestock Research Organisation.

EACC, in a suit filed at the High Court in Nakuru last week, says Pineapples Edge Limited (PEL) and Trojan Nominees Limited (TNL) were irregularly allocated the land meant for the National Quarantine Station in Naivasha.

The case is before Justice Mwangi Njoroge of the Environment and Land Court in Nakuru. Last week, the judge barred PEL and TNL from interfering with the property until the application by EACC is heard inter-partes. The case will be heard inter-partes on July 18.

The commission, in documents filed in court, is seeking a declaration that the allocation of the land to PEL and TNL was illegal, null and void. EACC wants the chief land registrar to rectify and cancel titles issued to PEL and TNL.

The two companies, it said, should be barred from trespassing onto the property which is public land. EACC had probed allegations of irregular alienation and acquisition of the land since 2015.

The agency says it received a complaint from the office of the Director of Public Prosecution, through a letter dated August 5, 2015, relating to the allocation of the research land.

The commission’s South Rift Manager Ignatius Wekesa released a report on July 4, 2022, revealing the land that had been set aside for government use as a veterinary farm in 1904.

The property has a large riparian and lake frontage located in Naivasha Township, vandalised staff houses, water tanks, underground systems, and vandalised livestock structures. “The farm was the hub for indigenous chicken breeding, Lucerne research and a multiplication centre for Sahiwal cattle,” reads EACC’s report.

According to EACC, the farm had poultry houses, offices, dips, and residential and irrigation facilities. “Currently, the country has no livestock quarantine facility as a result of the irregular allocation,” claims EACC. A surveyor’s report of 1970 shows the land is expansive and geographically located along Naivasha-Mai Mahiu road, a few kilometres from Naivasha town.

The survey by James Kamwere shows the land was first subdivided into four portions measuring a total of over 435 acres, numbered 230 to 233. EACC reveals that parcels 230, 232, and 233 were then merged to form 284 before it was subdivided into six parcels numbered 285, 286, 288, 289, 290, and 291.

As per records obtained from the Ministry of Lands, EACC established that one of the six parcels (285), measuring 216.1 acres, was illegally allocated to Pineapples Edge Limited (PEL) on April 16, 1995. Parcel Number 290 was also allegedly allocated to PEL. The two parcels were registered on April 28, 1997, and May 8, 1997, respectively.

PEL was allegedly struck off the Register of Companies and dissolved via the Kenya Gazette on December 24, 1999.

On August 15, 1995, parcel number 285 together with parcel number 289, which measures 197.5 acres, were allocated to Settlement Fund Trustees (SFT) who accepted on December 21, 1995.

EACC says on June 13, 1996, parcel numbers 289, 291, and Uns. Naivasha Municipality measuring 101.5 acres, 29.2 acres and 56.8 acres respectively, were allocated to SFT.

EACC’s probe report shows parcel numbers 289 and 291 measuring 101.5 acres and 29.2 acres were illegally allocated to TNL. “The two parcels allocated to TNL were registered on December 16, 1997,” reveals EACC.

As a result of the alleged allocation, EACC states that Kalro was unlawfully deprived of its land.

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