Court revokes recall of chief lands registrar appointment

Ministry of Lands

The Ministry of Lands headquarters in Nairobi. 

Photo credit: File | Nation Media Group

The Employment and Labour Relations Court has quashed the appointment of Mr David Nyambasa Nyandoro as the chief lands registrar.

Instead, Justice Byram Ongaya directed Principal Secretary Ministry of Lands and Physical Planning Mr Nixon Korir to appoint Dr Peter Mburu Ng’ang’a, to the position as recommended by the Public Service Commission (PSC) last year.

The court was informed that the commission had recommended the appointment of Dr Mburu, a former deputy lands registrar, on September 28, 2023, but recalled the letter because “an adverse claim” was made against him verbally.

Justice Ongaya said PSC had no reason to recall the appointment because of the verbal claim, which could not be verified.

“The court returns that the rescinding of the appointment of Dr Mburu and the recalling of the letter conveying his appointment and then, the purported decision appointing Mr Nyandoro were all void acts,” the judge said.

Mr Aggrey Wafula, Busia Senator Okiya Omtatah and Mr Issa Elanyi Chemao had challenged the appointment of Mr Nyandoro as irregular and sought an order to compel Mr Korir to confirm Dr Mburu as the chief lands registrar.

The PSC secretary Dr Simon Rotich informed the court that a vacancy arose in the position of the chief lands registrar and after advertising the position, nine candidates were shortlisted.

The commission letter wrote to EACC asking for information on the candidates and PS was informed that Dr Mburu had been charged but the charges were later withdrawn. Dr Mburu emerged as the top candidate, the court heard.

The PSC then wrote to the PS Korir recommending the appointment of Dr Mburu to the position.

However, the commission allegedly received an intelligence report, which adversely affected Dr Mburu, forcing the PSC to rescind its letter conveying the appointment.

Mr Korir then went ahead and appointed Mr Nyandoro to the position.

The judge said the verbal adverse communication against Dr Mburu remains unverified and there was a probability that there was no such communication.

“The Commission's decision appointing Dr Mburu Ng'ang'a as the Chief Land Registrar and the Commission's letter conveying the same on 28th Sept 2023 are hereby upheld,” the judge said.

Justice Ongaya said all the transactions made by Mr Nyandoro during the period he was in charge remain valid as he was holding the position courtesy of a court ruling.

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