Judge throws out land suit by supermarket operator

Shivling Supermarket in Kisumu. FILE PHOTO | NMG

A judge has dismissed a land case filed by the proprietor of a supermarket in Kisii town accusing the retailer of failing to prosecute the matter since 2016.

Justice Jane Onyango dismissed the case by Shivling Supermarket stating that the owner failed to explain the long delay, even after being given time to do so.

The Environment and Land court judge said the reason given by the director of the supermarket Rajesh Patel, that there was a similar case pending before another court was not plausible.

“It beats logic why this court should stay a matter whose resolution can be found in another case,” the judge said.

Mr Rajesh has been battling with Jimmy Ondocho Nyabuti and John Anthony Nyabati over a parcel of land in Kisii town.

Mr Nyabati said the land belongs to the estate of the late Zachariah Angwenyi where he is the legal administrator. Mr Rajesh had sought to be declared as the owner of the land in Kisii and a permanent order restraining the rival party from interfering with his enjoyment of the property. He also sought general damages for acts of trespass by the two.

Mr Nyabati on his part sought a similar order and for the court to restrain Rajesh or his agents from further demolishing, fencing, leasing, or building on the land.

Mr Rajesh told the court that the delay was occasioned by a move by his advocates to drop out of the matter and he failed to appoint another lawyer in time. He further claimed that he later learnt that his title was revoked by the National Land Commission, forcing him to file another case, challenging the revocation.

The two defendants later filed an application for the dismissal of the case arguing that there has been an inordinate and inexcusable delay in prosecuting the matter.

Mr Rajesh later filed an application, urging the court to suspend the matter, awaiting the outcome of the judicial review, saying the decision will have a bearing on the case.

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