EACC repossesses Railways land from Oburu Oginga

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The Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) has recovered a parcel of land in Kisumu that was irregularly acquired by East African Legislative Assembly MP from Kenya Railways Corporation.

The anti-corruption agency recovered a second parcel that was also irregularly acquired by Kendeep Construction Company.

“In the wake of the presidential directive concerning repossession of the Kenya Railways land and the ongoing construction of the Kisumu Port, this is quite a milestone for the anti-graft body,” said EACC Chief Executive Officer Mr Twalib Mbarak on Friday.

Mr Mbarak said this will act as an impetus and motivation for the agency to be able to deal with other land grabbers in Kisumu.

EACC now has the powers to regularise the land ownership in readiness for the hand over to the Kenya Railways Corporation, he stated.

Both parcels are valued at Sh60 million according to the EACC.

The recovery was made at the backdrop of the ongoing efforts to clear the Lake Victoria front and repossess government land around the lake for purposes of the ongoing revitalisation of the Kisumu Inland Port.

EACC’s case against Dr Oginga has been in court for the last eight years.

The EACC sued Dr Oginga and former Commissioner of Lands Sammy Mwaita, currently the Member of Parliament for Baringo Central in a bid to recover the property worth Sh30 million.

In the case before the High Court in Kisumu, the two are accused of colluding to defraud Kenya Railways of the half-acre piece of land- Kisumu Mun. Block. 7/509.

The defunct Kenya Anti-Corruption Commission (KACC) moved to court in 2010 and obtained interim orders blocking Dr Oginga from selling or transferring the disputed parcel, arguing that the politician fraudulently obtained the registration of the suit property belonging to Kenya Railways Corporation.

According to court documents, the land was set aside as part of the railway reserve in 1935. It was duly registered and subsequently vested in the defunct East African Railways Corporation.

Dr Oginga is said to have procured a lease over the property from Mr Mwaita, then commissioner of lands, and registered it at the district land registry in Kisumu on February 12, 2001.

Efforts by Dr Oginga to have the court dismiss the case flopped.

The MP had argued that he followed the right procedure to acquire the property and declined to surrender its title deed.

The anti-corruption agency has been pursuing political leaders and top government officials in a bid to recover assets valued at more than Sh10 billion.

The commission seeks to recover public assets that were acquired irregularly by various politicians and senior officials of government over the years.

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