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EACC Commissioner Paul Mwaniki At The Centre Of Grabbed Land In Githurai

Paul Mwaniki | File
Paul Mwaniki | File

A commissioner of the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC), Mr Paul Mwaniki Gachoka, is on the spot for doing transactions on a grabbed piece of land in Githurai 44.

The land in question belongs to Miaraho Limited company owned by John Godhard Mburu, a former Nairobi Provincial Commissioner during President Jomo Kenyatta and Daniel Arap Moi leaderships.

Through his law firm, Mwaniki Gachoka & Company Advocates, the lawyer is the recipient of all payments from prospective buyers on behalf of Hydro Developers Limited, the company offering the land for sale.

The 302 acre piece of land has been subdivided, with a 40 by 80 piece going for Ksh4 million.

Records at the Ministry of lands indicate that Miaraho Ltd acquired the land on May 9, 1974 from Katunda Coffee Estates Limited.

Miaraho Ltd was registered on June 11, 1973 under Certificate of Incorporation number 11739.

Records from the Lands Ministry show that Miaraho Ltd entered into transactions with various banks under their chairman J.G. Mburu and no further transactions were entered into with the land remaining vacant until recently.

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However, people who presented themselves as the directors of Miaraho Ltd entered into a sale agreement with directors of Hydro Developers Ltd on the land.

Transaction records at the Ministry of Lands show that Miaraho Ltd was represented by Patrick Githinji Mwangi of ID number 9089926 from Murang’a  East but a resident of Ol Kalau and Titus Thuo Macharia of ID No. 188912, from Murang’a East and Hydro Developers Ltd represented by Mukesha Kumar Velji Salva of ID No. 8745305 and Rajesh Velbhai Salva of ID No. 13299876 entered into a sale agreement.

When the government initiated the Northern By-Pass construction project, the two supposed directors presented themselves to the Ministry of Lands posing as bonafide Miaraho Ltd directors.

Documents in our possession show that the two individuals posing as Miaraho Ltd director changed their national identity cards and posed as the original directors but they forgot that their dates of birth could expose them to a keen scrutiny by hawk eyed DCI.

Record at the ministry of Lands place the two impostors as having been 9 and 15 years respectively, at the time they acquired the piece of land.

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However, despite these anomalies and records in the ministry of lands file number 18928, the ministry officials in collusion with the fraudsters conspired to release Ksh201, 933,250 to an account number 3003070/CD/1 at Giro Commercial Bank Ltd in the name of Miaraho Ltd whose opening was facilitated by use of the forged IDs and certificate of incorporation which to date cannot be traced at the Registrar of Companies.

Interestingly, Giro Commercial Bank which has now been bought off by I&M Bank, shared the same directors with the firm now purporting to have bought the and hydro developers Ltd.

Further investigations have established that the Ksh201.9 million was shared between the two purported directors and an amount of Ksh26,746,126 was wired to account number 0120001029000 Consolidated Bank in the name of E.K Njagi & Co Ltd for the benefit of the estate of the late Mwangi Githinji as per records on March 11, 2011.

Interestingly, Miaraho Ltd, represented by the two directors enters into an agreement to sale the land for Ksh200 million, three months even before the first transaction from the Ministry of Lands has been received and they surrendered all their rights to Hydro Developers Ltd represented by Mukesh Velji Salva of ID No. 8745305 and Ajay Velji Shah of ID No. 13299876.

Mukesh Salva was a director at Giro Commercial Bank where the land compensation payments by Ministry of Lands was to be wired to.

The lady advocate who witnessed the fraudulent sale is a lawyer in Mwaniki Gachoka, who acted for both seller and buyer which means he is the center of the fraud.

With the contract signed by the Macharia and Githinji, Hydro Developers Ltd proceeded to occupy the said land and surrendered a title to the Ministry of Lands to legitimize the acquisition and start the subdivision.

This is despite the fact that the late Camelina Mburu, widow of the late PC John Godhard Mburu visited the property and cautioned them against entering the land.

Camelina Mburu once went to meet the then Lands minister Charity Ngilu to lodge a complaint over fraudulent acquisition of some of her late husband’s property by unscrupulous dealers.

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The Ministry of Lands proceeded to value the land at Ksh1 billion on July 15, 2011 but there are no records that Hyrdo Developers Ltd ever paid for the land.

The only noticeable transaction is the Ksh200 million paid by the Ministry of Lands into the Giro Commercial Bank account as compensation for the acquisition of part of the land on which the Nothern By Pass sits.

There are no records that Hydro Developers paid the stamp duty for the Ksh1 billion that the government valued the property at.

An advertisement for the sale of the land directs potential buyers through lawyer Mwaniki Gachoka & Company Advocates.

Directors of Miaraho Limited through their lawyer Howard, Nicks & Kenneth Advocates in a letter dated May 42018 wrote to the Permanent Secretary Ministry of Lands and Physical Planning on the alleged fraudulent transfer and subdivision of land title No. IR. 1213, L.O. No 4927 original deed plan no. 22896 in a letter reference Miaraho/5/112/2018.

The letter which was received at Hydro Developers Ltd on May 7, 2018 is copied to the Director of Directorate Criminal Investigations, Director General Financial Reporting Centre (FRC), National Lands Commission (NLC), chairperson National Assembly Lands Committee, Giro Commercial Bank and Nairobi Governor’s office.

The investigators are trying to establish how two people who allegedly sold the land to the estate developer acquired ownership of the huge track of land when they were only nine and fifteen years old.

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The two are supposedly directors of a company registered in 1974 when they were nine and 15 years old according to their National Identification cards issue.

The land has been subdivided into 40 by 80, five acre and one acre block for selling as River Island under Pink House Management.

“We refer to the above and kindly wish to lodge a complaint against a company by the name Hydro Developers Limited who purports to have acquired the above property from Miaraho Limited. Please note that Miraho Ltd directors as constituted have never entered into agreement with Hydro Developers Ltd for acquisition of the above noted property,”the letter reads in part.

According to the copy of the title IR 1213 charge No. 27 the transfer of title to Miaraho Ltd was entered in Lands records as presentation No. 765 dated May 17, 1974.

Katunda Coffee Limited, the previous wrote to the Ministry of Lands for a provisional title on February 19, 1974 and transferred the property No. 4927 to Miaraho Ltd on May 9, 1974.

Notice of Publication of Gazette Notice from the Registrar of Titles, S. Khosla to the Government Printers was sent on June 20, 1974.

A provisional title was issued to Katunda Coffee Limited and the entries for sale to Miaraho Ltd through agreement on May 9, 1974.

Compensation for acquisition of the land of Ksh200 million by Ministry of Lands for the Northern By Pass was paid to Miaraho Ltd under account number 3003670/CD/1 Giro Bank Limited.

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Records show that Miaraho Ltd got a loan from Kenya Commercial Bank on May 17, 1974 but on the same day another document shows that there was a transfer on that document.

In their letter through Howard, Nicks and Kenneth Advocates, Miaraho Ltd directors state that the land belongs to them and that the original title that was supposedly replaced by a provisional title as per presentation number 1216 is still in their custody.

Letters reference LND 16/03/7/32 from the then Nairobi Provincial Commissioner confirms that LR No.4927 belonged to Miaraho Ltd as did another letter reference No. 16/3/7/5 from Kumoru Advocates February 5, 1974.

Interestingly one of the purported directors Patrick Githinji registered a caveat through presentation number 292 of 19/01/2005 claiming benefits yet he was a signatory in the sale contract between Miaraho Ltd and Hydro Developers Ltd.

Hydro Developers Ltd allegedly paid Ksh200 million on June 12, 2011 for the said land but through a Miscellaneous Application number 276 of 2010 Nyambura Mwangi filed a case challenging the transaction by Commissioner of Lands as compensation for compulsory acquisition of part of L.R. NO 4929 for construction of the Northern By pass.

A document dated October 4, 1976 shows Mr Mburu giving instruction to East African Acceptance Limited to be their official agents on the piece of land, then known as Miaraho Estate.

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Written by Kahawa Tungu

Email: news@kahawatungu.com

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