KDF renews battle with City Hall over Kayole link road
The Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) has renewed its battle with City Hall over the Mihango-Kayole link road with an application to have the dispute referred to the Intergovernmental Relations Technical Committee (IRTC).
Attorney- General Githu Muigai, acting for the KDF, said in a fresh application that the Constitution provides that intergovernmental disputes are to be resolved by the IRTC before being moved to court.
The KDF wants Justice George Odunga to dismiss City Hall’s suit and lift an order that stopped it from denying civilians access to the link road.
Prof Muigai added that the Judicial Review division of the High Court where City Hall filed its suit against the KDF has no authority to determine land disputes, hence Justice Odunga had no authority to entertain the case.
City Hall sued the Kenya Defence Forces for restricting civilians from using the link road, and now claims that it has already awarded a Sh230 million tender to Nyoro Construction Company for upgrade of the road.
Acting county secretary Robert Ayisi said in court documents that Nyoro is to tarmac the Mahingo road to ease CBD access for the area’s residents. He says the KDF has illegally dug a deep trench across the Mihango Road link and deployed armed officers to the site.
The KDF now says that City Hall obtained a court order ordering the military to reopen the road by withholding crucial information from Justice Odunga. The KDF says it has been in occupation of the land surrounding the link road since 1984.
NO SUCH ROAD
“There is no such public road as Embakasi-Mihang’o or Mihang’o-Kayole as the survey plan in our custody does not provide for a public road within the garrison quarters as contended by City Hall.”
“This court lacks jurisdiction to entertain this matter as this is a matter that ought to be resolved through alternative dispute resolution mechanisms and generally relates to environment and land and more particularly planning, title, tenure and boundaries which matters fall squarely within the ambit of the Environment and Land Court,” Prof Muigai argued.
The county government says that the Mihango Road has been in existence for over 30 years and is the most convenient route for Kayole and Mihango residents to the central business districts.
But the KDF holds that there is a designated and well recognised road that residents should use, and that the claim by City Hall is part of a wider scheme by some county officials to grab 106 acres of land.
Prof Muigai adds that the trenches it dug along the disputed road are part of an exercise by the KDF to fence off its land.
The KDF says there are three other cases regarding ownership of the land surrounding the disputed road.
In two of the cases, private developers Darkwood Investments and Torino Enterprises are separately seeking compensation for the land claiming that the KDF grabbed it from them. The third case was filed by City Hall against the KDF in 2012.