Govt Loses Land to Nairobi Billionaire

  • a
    Marble Arch Hotel. The owner Mike Maina Kamau appealed a decision by the Lands court which had given away his land to the government.
  • The government has lost a multi-million land case to Nairobi billionaire Mike Maina Kamau after the Court of Appeal issued an order suspending a decision by a Lands Court which had ruled in favour of the Kenya Prisons Department in January 2020. 

    The Prisons Department wanted Maina's title deed for the land located in Murang'a County to remain null and void as ruled by Lands Court judge Justice Grace Kemei. 

    Kemei had also ordered the tycoon to desist from interfering with the land. Maina is also the owner of the famous five-star hotel, Marble Arch located in Nairobi County.

    In the ruling made on Friday, November 20, Justices Hannah Magondi Okwengu, Mohammed Abdullahi Warsame and Jamila Mohammed issued Maina a temporary relief against the ruling issued by the Lands Court. 

    Court of Appeal judge Hannah Okwengu

    The judges ascertained that the tycoon's company, Muthithi Investments Ltd, is the registered owner of the 1.045 hectares. 

    "It is evident that the applicant is the registered owner of the suit property and stands at risk of losing the suit property to the Muranga Juvenile Remand Home, an entity that is not a party to the suit and which has not laid claim to the suit property. 

    "In the circumstances, therefore, we find that there is merit in the applicant’s contention that the intended appeal will be rendered worthless if a stay is not granted and the intended appeal succeeds," the judges ruled.

    They added that Maina defended himself accordingly with satisfactory evidence granting an order of stay of execution until the court makes a final ruling on the case on a date that will be set later on.

    The tycoon detailed that he purchased the land from one Stanley Njuguna at Ksh 1 million in 1997. 

    In April 2020, the court ordered the government to pay Maina Ksh 859 million as compensation following the demolition of his mansion in Nairobi’s Spring Valley to pave the way for road construction. 

    Ksh 847,277,351 was awarded for the demolished property while Ksh12,259,342 was to take care of his legal expenses.

    The Milimani Law Courts in Nairobi as pictured on November 18, 2019
    The Milimani Law Courts in Nairobi as pictured on November 18, 2019
    Simon Kiragu