Deputy President William Ruto is to pay Cyrus Jirongo Sh140 million as compensation for land and property constructed on his piece of land situated in Ngong town.
The lawyers of the two have worked out modalities for payment with Ruto agreeing to pay Sh10 million by tenth of every month.
A source close to the dealings say already, Ruto has paid a downpayment of Sh40 million. Jirongo has used part of the money to relocate his offices from Loita Street located on the seventh floor of Pension House to Yaya Centre area.
Jirongo, it is said, wants to use the money to finance his new political outfit United Democratic Party formed on May 30 this year and which has also former speaker of national assembly Kenneth Marende, other officials of the UDP are Welengai and Kenneth Butiko, who in 2013 ran on an ODM ticket for Vihiga governorship race but lost to Moses Akaranga.
The Sh140 million payment was agreed upon after Jirongo involved Nairobi debt collector Bryan Yongo to do paper work on how the DP was to compensate him.
At the centre of the compensation is a prime residential property which Jirongo and Ruto agreed to jointly develop together in early 1990s.
The two were officials of Youth for Kanu (YK92). However, after Kanu and Moi won elections, a section in the ruling elite started harassing Jirongo. The anti-Jirongo forces who were bitter and afraid of the power and access to Moi the YK92 team had decided to clip and force them into political oblivion and irrelevance.
Those baying for Jirongo’s blood then were George Saitoti, Nicholas Biwott and senior officers in government security detail. Franklin Bett, then based at State House was also in the camp.
At their instigation, Jirongo was forced to write statemenst at CID headquarters then based at Nairobi Milimani area. Jirongo was a worried man after word started going round that his wealth had been targeted. In panic, Jirongo moved fast to transfer his properties and bank accounts to trusted friends and relatives.
Ruto was to take charge of the Ngong town land and another located near community. A prime plot in Upper Hill was also placed in custody of a third party.
The controversial 1,000 acre in Nairobi’s Ruai area could not have been registered in another name since it had been used to acquire money from Post Bank Credit then headed by Francis Chahonyo.
According to CBK sources, Jirongo’s 1,000-acre plot in Ruai estate (Land Ref: No. 12973/3) was to be sold to recover Sh20 billion he took from Post Bank Credit but when he got wind, he rushed to court and got an injunction just two days before auctioneers were due to put the land up for sale. The vast land is said to be valued over Sh7 billion.
The CBK had planned to auction the land to recover money that collapsed Post Bank Credit lent Sololo Outlets, a company owned by Jirongo.
The orders stopped and restrained Kenya Deposit Insurance Corporation from selling the land pending the hearing and determination of the application.
Sololo had defaulted on the loan, which was extended to it for construction of residential estates that were to be sold to the National Social Security Fund.
The NSSF had an agreement with Sololo to buy an incomplete housing project in Nairobi’s South B Hazina Estate. Jirongo had used the Ruai land owned by another of his companies, Offshore Trading, to guarantee the loan.
Jirongo claimed the loan had 26 guarantors with the principal guarantor being Cyrot Limited. Others are Davy Koech, Kuza Farms and Allied Limited, Kipa and Sons and Cyper Enterprises.
Jirongo’s deal with the NSSF did not have a happy ending after he raised the price of the estate to Sh2.65 billion in May 1993 from an initial Sh1.2 billion, citing a jump in material costs. The NSSF terminated the contract, having paid Sh900 million and hired a different contractor to finish the work. The estate consisted of 420 homes, a school and a shopping centre.
Post Bank Credit was one of the banks involved in the infamous Goldenberg scandal which brought several banks to their knees during the Moi era when Jirongo was a strong political figure at the time after he led YK92 to campaign for Daniel Moi.
In 2011, Jirongo was paid Sh490 million by the NSSF as an out-of-court settlement for a Sh4.5 billion claim for breach of contract relating to the estate transaction. Jirongo had disclosed that he had planned to sell the Ruai land in order to settle a Sh32 million debt owed to Emris Investments in another land row. Emris had gone to court after Jirongo failed to honour a commitment to pay the cash.
At one time, Jirongo had to fight to retain ownership of the1,000 acre Ruai land after a group of squatters laid claim to the property.
A group of squatters under Ruai Embakasi Youth United Development Organisation (Reyuda) wanted the High Court to nullify Jirongo’s title deed and declare it the valid owner of the massive tract of land. The squatters claimed that they have occupied the land since 1993 and wanted themselves declared its valid owners.
With DP offsetting the debt he owes Jirongo, the former Lugari MP’s presence is being felt in both political and business circles.
Last week, he flew to Tanzania with his business associates saying he was on a trip aimed at reviving his mining interests in Tanzania. Jirongo also plans to revive his quarry mines in Kajiado county.
Unconfirmed reports have it that Jirongo is now in partnership with Vihiga senator George Khaniri in business ventures.
That Jirongo is not taking anything for granted or lying low is manifested in a war of words that almost turned physical between him and Jap activist Stanley Livondo.
That was at Trishan Hotel when the two exchanged bitter words and at one time Jirongo boasted how he had the money to run a presidential campaign 2017.
He dismissed Uhuru Kenyatta claiming he was out to misuse to Luhya community. Livondo, is said to have told Jirongo he should stop dreaming of ruling Kenya at any given time.
An MP we talked to revealed, the newfound relationship between Ruto and Jirongo is aimed at striking business and political deals.
Ruto is to help Jirongo land lucrative business tenders at Kenya Power where Marende is the chairman.
On the political front, Jirongo is to checkmate Musalia Mudavadi in Western politics.
Initially, Ruto had enlisted the support of MPs but has found out they cannot sell him in Western province.
Ruto has of late been making forays in western in a bid to have roots in Luhyaland which is under ANC, Ford-Kenya of Moses Wetang’ula and New Ford associated with Eugene Wamalwa.
In his bid to find a bearing in the region, local MPs who have been friendly the DP are Ayub Savula of Lugari, Malulu Injendi, Malava, Ben Washiali, Mumias East, Ben Shinali, Ikolomani, Eseli Simiyu, Boniface Otsula, Bumula
A bitter MP said of late, the DP has been isolating them and rarely calls them for weekend facilitation as it used to be sometimes back. Instead, he now works with Jirongo to tame Mudavadi. Surprisingly, he revealed Jirongo is a cunning political animal who at day time talks ill of Ruto but at night, he dines and wines with him.
The Ruto-Jirongo relationship is said to be strong since the YK92 days. They formed United Democratic movement during Kanu days together with Kipruto Kirwa.
In 2002, they were in cabinet and supported Uhuru presidency. When Jirongo lost his mother last year, Ruto was the mourner-in-chief.
Other sources say that Uhuru makes inroads in Luhya politics sidelining Ruto wing and now Jirongo is Ruto newfound man in the region.
Uhuru naming ofWamalwa to the cabinet was opposed by Ruto side at initial the stages that saw his swearing-in delayed. Jirongo has come out to dismiss the appointment saying it does not add value to the community.
Wamalwa’s New Ford Kenya is close to TNA and Noah Wekesa’s speech at the burial of the late Joseph Kamotho endeared him to Uhuru and Ruto. Wekesa in his eulogy said Kamotho was a political schemer and since he learned a lot from him, his skills were not being utilised. It is no small wonder then that Wekesa was co-opted in the team that will merge URP and TNA to officially form Jap
Apart from Wekesa, Wamalwa has seen Musikari Kombo, Joash Wamang’oli land positions in government. New Ford Kenya has Bungoma governor Kenneth Lusaka as the party leader.
Lusaka is to counter Ford-Kenya’s senator Moses Wetang’ula politics in Bungoma County but the recent wheelbarrow scandal in the county has soiled his nascent political career.
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