Politics and policy
Tamarind, roads authority case set for October 2
Posted Wednesday, July 4 2012 at 20:07
Parties embroiled in a suit over the intended demolition of up- market apartments in Mombasa to pave way for a by-pass have been ordered to file written submissions.
High Court judge Francis Tuiyott on Wednesday directed Tamarind Village Ltd and the Kenya Urban Roads Authority (Kura) to file, exchange, and serve their submissions before the case is mentioned on October 2.
The court stopped Kura from demolishing the multi-million- shilling estate to pave way for construction of a bridge.
Tamarind Village claimed that the property on which the estate and a restaurant sit was legally acquired.
In March, Nairobi judge Justice Mohammed Warsame issued orders restraining Kura from interfering with the property on plot numbers 755 and 4/6.
Kura had claimed that private developers including Tamarind Village Ltd had grabbed a road reserve at English Point in Mkomani area, Mombasa, and that the buildings were marked for demolition.
However, Tamarind Village said it had occupied the land for the past 20 years on the strength of two title deeds that prove ownership.
The firm claimed that the government’s move amounted to compulsory acquisition yet the State had not engaged Tamarind in negotiations as is required by the law. The firm argued that its tenants would suffer irreparable loss and damage.
In response, Roads ministry permanent secretary Michael Kamau said that any transactions on the road reserve, located on the mainland side of the old Nyali Bridge, were unlawful.
Mr Kamau described transactions on the plots of land in dispute as irregular and a manifestation of the culture of land grabbing.
He said the government planned to establish a bridge on the spot where the old floating Nyali Bridge that linked Mombasa mainland to the island used to be.
Mr Kamau said that entities claiming to hold title deeds to the land in question were doing so against public interest.
The PS said that the history of the bridge dated back to an agreement signed on October 9, 1929 between Nyali Ltd and the colonial government.
He said that the government allowed Nyali Ltd to build the bridge connecting the Island to the mainland.
Pursuant to the agreement, Mr Kamau said, Nyali Ltd erected the bridge and created reserve land of up to 30 metres wide on either side.
Upon termination of the concession agreement, he said, the road reserve reverted to the government.