Francis Mburu Arrested Over Ruaraka Land Sh1.5b Payments

Businessman Francis Mburu, the man who claims to own the controversial Ruaraka land, was on Thursday arrested and questioned by EACC detectives over compensations made to him.

The arrest followed a raid by detectives at his Karen home on Thursday morning. Documents and computers were seized during the operation.

Detectives also seized 28 top of the range vehicles that were found in Mburu’s home.

Mburu was arrested together with two of his sons and taken to EACC headquarters at Integrity Centre and questioned into the night.

He was later picked up from the EACC at 8pm in a black Toyota Land Cruiser with a concealed registration number.

The businessman has so far been paid Sh1.5 billion for the 13.7 acre piece of land which is currently occupied by two schools – Ruaraka High and Drive Inn Primary school.

Top government officials and the National Land Commission ignored a court order and made the payments even after it emerged the land was public land.

This means the government spent billions of tax payers’ funds to buy its own land.

Last month, the National Assembly’s Land Committee, which investigated the matter, concluded the process of acquiring the land was fraudulent and bordered on collusion by top Ministry of Education, Treasury and NLC officials to swindle taxpayers.

On June 11, NLC chairman Muhammad Swazuri said the payments were above board.

He said after due diligence and considering market rates, the commission settled on a figure of Sh206 million per acre.

“We paid what we thought was the market (value) in that area. We have paid only Sh1.5 billion. Shida ni nini? Kosa ni nini? Nani ameibiwa pesa hapo? (What is the problem? Where is the mistake? Who has been conned money there?)” Swazuri said during a press briefing.

On Thursday, Mburu denied government claims that the land belongs to the public.

He said the land was initially 96 acres but he has since sold off 54 acres “at half the value”.

Mburu said the Sh1.5 billion he received was compensation for the 13.7 acres the schools currently occupy because he cancelled an ealier surrender notice.

He said he will sue the government at the Dubai International court for spoiling his name.

“This one I’m going to win. There is no scam, believe me am coming out with Sh25 billion. I will sue Kenyan government for over $200m for spoiling my name,” Mburu said in an interview with Citizen TV outside Integrity centre.

Sources at the EACC said more arrests could be executed on Friday as investigations into the saga continue.

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