The hearing of a multimillion-shilling land transaction dispute pitting retailer Bestlady Cosmetics against the Kanu political party and a Nairobi-based lawyer failed to kick off Wednesday at a Nyeri court due to absence of a trial judge.
Bestlady has sued Kanu for failing to complete a Sh100 million land sale deal for a parcel described as LR No. 2787/322 situated in Nanyuki and registered in the name of the political party.
The three parties were scheduled to appear before Justice Jairus Ngaah at the High Court in Nyeri for pretrial but the judge was away on official duties outside the station.
A notice posted at the court directed the litigants to seek fresh dates at the registry as the judge would be away up to November 15.
Proceedings of the case were slated to kick off after the judge’s recent decision to dismiss two applications by the trader and the lawyer, Titus Koceyo, seeking to have each other’s submissions struck out.
Bestlady Cosmetics managing director Peter Njoroge Karanja sued Kanu and Mr Koceyo (trading as Koceyo & Company Advocates) in August last year. He sought damages for breach of contract against Kanu and damages for negligence and breach of trust against Mr Koceyo whose law firm facilitated the disputed transaction.
He later filed an application seeking orders to strike out the defendants’ statements of defence and for judgment to be entered against them.
It was his position that the statements were scandalous, frivolous and vexatious only intended to prejudice, embarrass and delay trial of the suit.
Mr Koceyo, on the other hand, filed his own application urging court to strike out the suit against him on the primary ground that he was just an agent of Kanu in the transaction.
He urged that the suit against him discloses no reasonable action but rather it is an abuse of the due process of court.
The lawyer also filed a notice of preliminary objection opposing the hearing of the suit on grounds that the court has no jurisdiction.
According to him, the proper forum to determine the plaintiff’s complaint against him is the Advocates Disciplinary Tribunal in accordance with the Advocates Act.
Justice Ngaah dismissed the two applications and said he would give reasons for his decision in his judgment after the full hearing of this case.