Deputy President William Ruto has hit the headlines for another day straight. This time, it is not for launching ghost projects worth billions or for promising to teach former Prime Minister Raila Odinga manners in his bedroom-read-Kibra; rather, it is for what straight shooting observers would label as primitive acquisition of wealth(land).
A human rights lobby has written to the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI)demanding investigations into how Ruto acquired 900 acres of land belonging to former Vice Presidents Joseph Murumbi.
Here is a little history lesson. Joseph Zuzarte Murumbi was born in 1911 and died in June 1990. He served as Minister for Foreign Affairs under Jomo Kenyatta’s administration from 1964-1966 and as the Country’s second Vice-President between May and December 1966. Yap, for only eight months before Daniel Toroitich took over as VP.
He was an avid art collector, and during his life acquired over 50,000 books and sheaves of official correspondence. The Kenya National Archives established a library containing some of the 8000 rare books (published before 1900) entrusted to them upon the death of Murumbi. The Kenya National Archives also created the ‘Murumbi Gallery’ within the same building, displaying the different African artifacts that were collected by him through his life.
It has now emerged that four years ago, through North Mogor Holdings, Ruto acquired the Intona ranch land located in Trans Mara West Sub-county. He allegedly did not buy it. He settled a loan the late Murumbi owed Agriculture Finance Corporation (AFC) and took it. The letter to both Noordin Haji led DPP and to George Kinoti’s DCI want both North Mogor Holdings and AFC charged with aiding in corruption.
The land located 23 kilometers South West of Kilgoris was allocated to the late VP in 1977 by the Narok County Council and officially handed to him by the then Lands Minister Joseph Angaine. However, records show that Murumbi defaulted on a Sh8million loan he owed to the AFC that he took to finance farming. He had 25 years to pay the loan.
His brothers, Kitui ole Yiamboi and Oiboo ole Kapeen took AFC to court claiming the Government had written off the loan. AFC however claim the land was the security for the loan and when the loan was not paid, they took back the land, tried to sell it via auctioning and bought it back themselves.
It has now emerged that it was Mogor Holdings that bought the property on behalf of Ruto. The late VP’s family through their lawyers Oguttu-Mboya have tried to get the land back even through the then Chief Justice in vain.
Ruto has also been linked to public land where Weston Hotel stands and land meant for post election violence victims in Uasin Gishu.
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