An expensive residential home in Nairobi’s leafy suburbs of Karen owned by powerful Moi-era politician and former Co-operative Bank chairman Hosea Kiplagat has been placed under auction.
Bank of India is seeking to auction Kiplagat’s Karen residential home and associated company assets over a Sh378.61 million loan.
According to BoI, Kiplagat guaranteed two firms — Eldoret Concrete Poles Limited and Timber Treatment Limited — through a public auction between August 25 and August 28.
The two companies set to be auctioned obtained the loan on May 14, 2018, and have failed to repay the money, prompting Bank of India to instruct Garam Investments to auction Kiplagat’s Karen home that sits on five acres and 11 other pieces of land belonging to the two companies and listed as the securities.
In a public notice, Garam Investments said it would auction the five-acre parcel of land in Nairobi’s Karen area located along Quarry Lane off Bogani Road where an acre of vacant land costs Sh55 million on average.
“It is developed with a three-bedroom (master ensuite) main house complex, son’s two-bedroom guesthouse (one suite), a three-bedroom servants’ quarter, a garage and carwash bay. It has a double-storeyed business room and guest entertainment block, a swimming pool (with fountain) and a baby pool, sauna and steam bath complex (with Jacuzzi), Office block complex, squash complex, three green houses and two beehives,” Garam says in the auction notice.
In his defence, Kiplagat, who served as the Co-op Bank chairman for a decade before resigning in 2003, firms Eldoret Concrete Poles and Timber Treatment say that they borrowed the money to boost their working capital and purchase of tractors and machinery.
The defaulting companies have obtained court injunction after stating that they wrote to Bank of India on March 27, requesting for a three-month grace period after running into Covid-19 headwinds but the lender did not respond.
“The intended sale of the suit premises by public auction is wrongful and if the defendant (Bank of India) is not restrained by an order for an injunction, the rights of the plaintiff as chargers will be grossly violated,” said the lawyers.
The two defaulting firms associated with the Moi-era politician are now counting on the new financier to take over the loan or they face the auctioneer’s axe.