It is now clear that the relationship between President Uhuru Kenyatta and suspended Lands CS Charity Ngilu is untenable. Charity Ngilu has been implicated in corruption dealings in her land docket, accusations she has vehemently denied.
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Ms Ngilu appeared before the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission to answer allegations on the Sh8 billion Karen land saga, Linkoni land in Mombasa and State House Crescent land where she implicated the President and his aides. According to Ngilu, she had been approached by presidential advisor Joshua Kuttuny who pressured her to give up a two acre piece of land at State House crescent in Nairobi.
She told the commission that Kuttuny told her that the President had given instructions that she goes slow on the land in question in light of ‘new developments’. The suspended CS however stated that the land was public property and was a planned site for Foreign Affairs ministry offices. The land is claimed by Ethiopian investor Hailu Asfaw and businessman Julius Kiplangat Kitur.
“He told me that there was a new development on this land and that I need to go slow on the repossession of this land. I declined and did not believe that the President, who had on more than three occasions directed me to repossess the said land, had sent him,” She told the commission
Ms Ngilu reads political machinations at play to see her hounded out of the powerful Lands docket. She presented a 98 page statement and exhibit to the EACC linking a powerful cartel consisting of state house officials for her predicament.
“I have encountered immense resistance from the cartels. Is it possible that these cartels working with other powerful forces are the ones accusing me and want to ensure that all the efforts towards transforming the land sector in Kenya are laid to waste?”
The CS went on to say that President Kenyatta was interested in the 930 acres land in South Coast and had even offered Sh 1 billion to Evanson Waitiki to purchase the land. Mr Waitiki declined the offer and instead asked for Sh9.3 billion for the land and a Sh392.9 million for assets loss in the hands of squatters who had invaded the land.
A valuation of the land by the government on 23, 2013 had valued the land at Sh2.64 billion, a figure the business declined. Ms Charity communicated the same to the President who asked for a meeting with the businessman. She told the commission:
“Mr Waitiki declined the offer of Sh2.64 billion. I reported the stalemate to the President who requested that I invite Mr Waitiki to meet him to discuss the matter,”
“This I did and a final offer price of Sh1 billion was given in a face to face meeting on August 18, 2014 at State House Nairobi by His Excellency the President to Mr Waitiki in my presence and my colleagues Mr Henry Rotich, Cabinet Secretary for the National Treasury, Mr ole Lenku (former) Cabinet Secretary of Interior and National Co-ordination, Mr Joseph Kinyua, the chief of staff and head of public service and Mr Evanson Waitiki.”
“This was an offer made by the President as part of negotiations and not price based on valuation as is suggested by the (EACC) report. The meeting with the President did not end with a firm agreement. Mr Waitiki left without committing to consider the offer…”
The relationship between the Uhuru and Ngilu has been frosty since her name appeared on the list of shame. It must be remembered that the suspended Land, Housing and Urban Development CS had told Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda that the President does not own any land in Kenya. She was seen has a very strong allay of the Head of State but the script is taking a new shape with Ngilu accusing State House officials of her woes.