Kiambu Residents suffered yet another blow after the Court struck out a case filed by a residents’ lobby seeking to stop re-surveying of land held and used by multinational fruit grower and juice processor Del Monte Kenya Ltd.
Justice Lucy Gacheru said the group, Gatuanyaga Residents Association, lacked grounds to institute the case hence the court has no powers to hear the matter.
Justice Gacheru said according to the Section 41 of the Societies Act, it is not in doubt that the law requires a society to sue through its representative which the lobby group had failed to do.
The judge was ruling on an application by Del Monte to strike out the case on grounds that the group has no capacity to sue in the manner it had purported to do in the suit.
Section 41 (2) of the Societies Act says “whereby a Society is charged with an offence under this Act or any rules made thereunder, the Society may appear by a representative, who may enter a plea on behalf of the Society and conduct the Society’s defence on its behalf.”
The lobby group moved to court last year disputing a gazette notice issued by the National Land Commission in March 2019 directing for a survey in order to address claims of historical land injustices.
The resurvey was to be undertaken by the director of survey and the county governments of Murang’a and Kiambu to establish if there is any variance between land leased and that the company occupies.
However, the lobby group claimed there was a scheme to shortchange residents of Kiambu and Murang’a.
While urging court to strike out the case, Del Monte had also told court that the case was time barred under section 7 of the Limitations of Actions Act.