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January 20, 2019

Swazuri, Kenya Railways boss arrested over SGR land compensation payouts

NLC chairman Mohamed Swazuri
NLC chairman Mohamed Swazuri

Embattled National Land Commission chairman Muhammad Swazuri has been arrested over alleged purchase of dubious land for the standard gauge railway.

He is currently at the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission after the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) gave consent for his arrest on Saturday.  

Police also arrested the commission's chief executive/secretary Chavangi Aziz Tom and Kenya Railways Managing Director Atanas Maina.

Als arrested are; Salome Munubi ( Director NLC) Francis Mugo (Director NLC) Gladys Muyanga (Ministry of Lands) and Obadiah Wainaina (Licensed Surveyor).

In a statement, DPP Noordin Haji said the EACC embarked on investigations which established that the Ministry of Lands irregularly allocated and registered land situated on the Railway Reserve.

"NLC officials fully cognisant of that fact proceeded to irregularly and illegally award and compensate the entities and persons in whose favour the fraudulent registration had been done," Haji said.

"Regrettably, Kenya Railways Corporation who is the custodian of Railway reserve actively participated in the entire process of compensation undertaken for and on their behalf by NLC."

Haji said EACC submitted its report recommending 17 suspects be charged with various economic crimes.

They include; 

  1. Salome Munubi, director Valuation and Taxation Committee, NLC
  2. Tom Chavangi, CEO NLC
  3. Francis Mugo, director of Finance and administration, NLC
  4. Atanas Maina, Managing Director, KRC
  5. Victor Kariuki, land surveyor, KRC
  6. Elijah Nyamu, assistant land surveyor, KRC
  7. John Mwaniki, senior land surveyor Lands ministry
  8. Caroline Kituyi, registrar of Tiles, Lands ministry
  9. Peter Mburu, registrar Lands ministry
  10. Gladys Munyanga, principal land registration officer, Lands Ministry
  11. Obadiah Wainaina, Private surveyor
  12. David Some
  13. Esther Chebet Some
  14. Dasahe Investment limited
  15. Keibukwo investment limited
  16. Olomotit Estate Limited
  17. NLC chairman Mohamed Swazuri

"I have reviewed the file and I am satisfied that the persons named herein actively participated in the perpetration of the alleged criminal activities and should therefore be charged and prosecuted," DPP said.

Internal correspondence from the NLC indicated that the chairman authorised Sh314 million to purchase five dubious plots for the standard gauge railway.

Swazuri disregarded resolutions by the NLC commissioners and unilaterally authorised payments to individuals with dubious land documents.

Read: Swazuri bought dubious SGR plots

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