Embattled National Land Commission (NLC) chairman Muhammad Swazuri is facing arrest after a Kerugoya based court issued a warrant of arrest against him for failing to appear in court without valid reason.
Swazuri failed before Environment and land Court in a case NLC is charged over a land dispute.
Kerugoya Magistrate issued the arrest warrant on May 15 this month to Nairobi Police County Commander Japheth Koome to enforce the order.
However, the order is yet to be enforced.
“Whereas the chairman of the National Land Commission has this day been charged in court for that he failed to attend court has been served. Therefore you are hereby commanded forthwith to apprehend the said person and to bring him before this court to answer charge and be further dealt with according to law.” The warrant of arrest reads in part.
Swazuri’s led commission is undergoing turbulent times underscored by alleged massive land fraud cases orchestrated by commission insiders and external players.
Early this month, Swazuri and seven other top officials were rounded up in their homes by anti-graft detectives over questionable Standard Gauge Railway land compensation amounting to Shs 2billion.
During the raid, Sh17million was recovered from one of the officials house in foreign currency and bank statements.
Among the cases Eacc is investigating bedeviling Swazuri’s led team in the Sh82 million payout made to a company belonging to Tanzanian tycoon, Salim Bakhresa, Bakhresa Grain Millers Ltd, was compensated against a title deed under dispute.
Swazuri also taken to task to explain the Sh1.6billion payment made to a Mombasa based tycoon Mohamed Jaffer of African Gas & Oil Company Ltd (Agol) against a court order barring the payout.
NLC made initial Sh519million then Sh1.1billion to Agol.
In a letter dated February 2, 2017, Joseph Nyingi Kamau and three other people petitioned the Eacc to investigate plans by the NLC to compensate African Gas & Oil Company Ltd, a company Sh519 million for a parcel of land the petitioners said belonged to them.
Lawyers Ndegwa, Katisya, Sitonik Advocates, say the petitioners are being unreasonably deprived their right, to full and just compensation.
The land at the center of ownership dispute between Kamau family and Jaffer was compulsorily acquired by the government for construction of the Standard Gauge Railway plot number 755/VI/755 bearing Title No. CR4151.
“It is ordered that this honourable court hereby restrains he defendant by itself, agents, employees, proxies, servants, officers, directors or otherwise from effecting payment, or any payments and or compensation and or in any other way or manner from interfering with all that parcel known as L.T NO. MN/VI/4737 pending the hearing and determination of this suit.” The order issued by Justice Ann Omollo reads in part.