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Corruption: Nairobi Governor Sakaja Entangled In City Multibillion Land Scam

Ayoti Ltd was incorporated on January 13, 2020 and has not declared a physical location, according to Business Registration Service records.

The governor is the sole shareholder with 10 shares. He is also the only director.

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Governor Sakaja.

Nairobi governor Johnson Sakaja has found himself in the center of a complex land grabbing scandal of a 18-acre piece in Loresho valued over Sh2 billion.

According to reports, the governor finds himself in the circus of the 16-years old land tussle after offering hundreds of millions to buy the contested land from a controversial owner. It was recently featured in the news when the Lands Cabinet Secretary Alice Wahome attempted to intervene but was kicked out by the purported owner and his goons.

Nairobi businessmen Ashok Rupshi Shah and Hitenkumar Raja claim to own the land however former Nairobi provincial administrator Davis Nathan Chelogoi is also claiming the same piece and has been occupying it.

History of the land

As of March, three parties were dangling three different title deeds, all claiming ownership of the same property. The courts have dealt with the authenticity of two of the titles and concluded that the one held by Ashok Rupshi Shah and Hitenkumar Amritlal Raja is genuine. Judges dismissed the one of Jacob Juma, who died in 2016. Juma’s widow and administrator of his estate, Miriam, says she will take the matter to the Appellate Court.

Slain businessman Jacob Juma assassinated in 2016.

Slain businessman Jacob Juma assassinated in 2016.

She is represented by city lawyer and former Law Society of Kenya President Nelson Havi. Then there is the third and most recent title held by Mr Chelogoi.

Ashok bought grabbed land

Deep in the scandal, court documents seen by Kenya Insights show businessman Ashok had bought the controversial land from other fraudulent businessmen.

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Mr. Shah Kirankumar Dharamshi and Mr. Dipti Kiran Shah were charged before the chief’s magistrate court in kibera on 15/10/2008 with the offences of forging a title deed (forgery) contrary to section 350(1) of the penal code, making a false document without authority contrary to section 357 of the penal code and obtaining 33,000,000 from yourself Ashok Shah by falsely pretending they were in a position to sell you the land in question contrary to section 313 of the penal code.

Sakaja

According to reports by a local newspaper, governor Sakaja had entered into a deal with Mr. Chelogoi to buy from him the contested land for Sh900 million. The deal was made on April 18, 2023 and through Sakaja’s company Ayoti Ltd.

At the time Sakaja was making the deal, the property was a subject of a court dispute and as Mr Chelogoi who in the agreement is referred to as the vendor had already filed an application for joinder as an interested party in a case pitting Ashok Shah and Hitenkumar Raja against Juma.

The application made on Aug 3, 2022 raises eyebrows as to why the governor entered into a deal with Chelogoi knowing well the matter was before the court.

The amount agreed (Sh900M) was also half the current market value begging the question why and the speed.

According to the registrar’s records seen by Kenya Insights, Ayoti Ltd was incorporated on January 13, 2020 and has not declared a physical location, according to Business Registration Service records.

The governor is the sole shareholder with 10 shares. He is also the only director.

Ayoti Ltd records.

Ayoti Ltd records.

In March, a Milimani Court directed that Chelogoi be charged for the offence of fraudulent acquisition of a Multi-billion shillings property located at Loresho, Nairobi.

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Trial Magistrate Dolphina Alego said Chelogoi has never appeared in court to take plea as directed.

She said the court will visit Chelogoi either in hospital as claimed by his defense lawyer or wherever he will be for the purpose of plea taking.

The Magistrate said the application made by defense counsel professor Tom Ojienda on grounds that his client is unwell and subsequent production of medical documents can no longer be entertained by the court.

Chelogoi has been fighting over the ownership of the land since 2009 but lost the fight when the Environment and Land Court ruled that it was grabbed by late businessman Jacob Juma in 2008.

The court ruled in 2022 that Juma, who died in May 2016, obtained documents to the land fraudulently.

The latest lend scandal adds to the many allegations of corruption that has marred the governor who has only been in office for two years. He has been accused of allegedly siphoning county funds and buying off properties overseas including the U.S. and Dubai.

Questions have been raised as to how he has been able to raise billions enough to buy such properties given his salary that doesn’t come close to buying a sensible fraction of what he owns.

In related matters, others are now questioning the legitimacy of wealth accumulated by public officials who seek to be in a rush to amass wealth, “Cabinet Ministers and Governors earns about Kshs. 2m per month; total Kshs. 120m in Five Years. That is the maximum they’ll earn in FIVE YEARS. But in less than two years in office, Ministers & Governors are buying multi-billion properties locally & abroad. When will EACC arrest them?” Lawyer Donald Kipkorir posed.

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Former Presidential candidate Prof Ole Kiyapi termed the accumulation as theft, “Such primitive accumulation of wealth (blatant theft) by public officials is an indictment on the Kenya soul – EACC operates peripherally, unable to dig deep and route our official corruption. Deals orchestrated through scandalous procurements is our bane! Ain’t rocket science!”


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