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Court orders Kiambu to process Tatu City building approvals

Tatu City told the court that intimidation by county officials was prejudicial to its business operations/FILE

NAIROBI, Kenya, Apr 10 – The Environment and Land Court in Thika has ordered the Kiambu County Government to process building approvals submitted by urban developer Tatu City within 30 days as provided in law.

The court issued the order on Monday following an application filed under certificate of agency in which Tatu City accused Governor Ferdinand Waititu of blackmail after the developer declined to surrender a portion of land his cronies had demanded in order to facilitate approval of architectural designs in 22 land parcels within the county.

In court papers filed on March 12 in which the applicant sought an expedited ex-parte hearing, the county administration was accused of disregarding a court order issued on April 18, 2018 an order which explicitly directed the Land, Housing, and Physical Planning to consider architectural plans within the 90-day period provided for under the Physical Planning Rules of 1998 pending determination of the case.

The applicant had also moved to commit the Chief Executive Committee member and Chief Officer in charge of Land, Housing, and Physical Planning to civil jail over contempt of court.

Tatu City told the court that intimidation by county officials was prejudicial to its business operations.

“The developers will no longer be able to preserve, promote, and enhance land value through sustainable development within Tatu City by guaranteeing development control which minimizes negative impacts of developments through enforcement of design guideline compliance,” lawyers representing Tatu City told the court.

The court set May 8 as the next mention date to confirm the issuance of approvals in line with the orders it issued on Monday.

The court will give further directions on the matter upon confirming compliance on May 21.


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