BY PRUDENCE WANZA – Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko has expressed his satisfaction in the ruling on Buruburu land dispute that has been ongoing at the Milimani Commercial Courts.
Senior Resident Magistrate, Elizabeth Wanjala set aside consent order in the disputed late Bishop Ochola’s land that houses his church Glad Tidings crusade in Buruburu.
In her ruling, SRM Wanjala stated that the fact that the alleged transfer of the property to Landmark was based on the impugned consent orders, was unlawful since there was no rates clearance certificate obtained from the County government.
On issue of jurisdiction , the magistrate ruled the proceedings are sub judice to a High Court ELC matter to the extent that the subject property is the same. She however stated that the sale agreements are different and not all parties herein are parties in the high court suit.
The magistrate reversed the order stating that she had no jurisdiction to grant such orders as she is a Senior Resident Magistrate who cannot deal with cases whose value exceeds Sh 7 million.
Sonko had filed an application through lawyer Harrison Kinyanjui, where he accused Patrick Nderitu of Landmark International Properties Limited of demolishing the property belonging to Glad Tidings Crusade.
Kinyanjui said that the court lacked jurisdiction since another case had been filed at the Environmental and Land Court.
Sonko who welcomed together with Ocholla’s widow Mary Ocholla, their daughter Joan Ocholla and others stated that he would deal with land grabbers in Nairobi and bring them to book.
In the case, Mary and Joan are disputing the sale of the property which houses Glad Tidings Crusade church and a school to Landmark International Properties limited claiming that proper procedure was not followed since they were not even consulted.
Mary accuses her last born daughter Christine Ocholla and her husband Edward Opiko of fraudulently selling the property without involving the trustees of the Bishop’s estate.
“I will continue to defend the widows,the poor and the rich from land grabbers in the county,” Sonko said.
The court further found that it was not necessary for Nairobi County Government to be enjoined as an interested party in the matter since it is not claiming proprietary interest in the suit property.
Their main interest was on unpaid rates which the magistrate ruled that Section 17 of cap 267 of the rating act stipulates mechanisms for recovery of the same.
Businessman Patrick Nderitu however maintains that he bought the property legally at Sh 19 million, a price that the family is also contesting as they claim it is worth Sh.100 million.
The defendants in the suit are Glad Tidings Limited, Christine Ocholla Opiko, Esther Mueni and Edward Otieno. Nairobi county had been enjoined as an interested party in the case.