Home » Inside Raila Odinga’s Multi-million restaraunt in Kilifi County priced at Sh 500m

Inside Raila Odinga’s Multi-million restaraunt in Kilifi County priced at Sh 500m

by Paul Nyongesa
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The coastal town of Malindi, nestled in the picturesque Kilifi County of Kenya, has long been revered as a paradise for tourists seeking sun-kissed beaches and azure waters.

Recently, plans for a luxury hotel development have surfaced, adding a new chapter to the town’s allure. Spearheaded by Kango Enterprises Limited, a company associated with Raila Odinga, the leader of Kenya’s ODM party, the proposed project aims to transform Malindi into an opulent tourism destination.

However, this ambitious venture has not been without its share of controversies, particularly concerning a piece of land whose ownership was contested.

The luxury hotel project, spanning approximately 4.3 acres, is set to be built a mere 100 meters from the pristine shoreline. The architectural designs depict a grand vision of an exotic retreat, complete with a jetty to facilitate sea excursions.

At the heart of the development lies a two-story block, housing a conference hall and 33 luxurious hotel rooms on its first floor, featuring an array of indulgences such as a spa, jacuzzi, sauna, and steam rooms. The second floor will boast an exquisite presidential suite and 19 additional rooms, while the ground floor will cater to various service rooms and offices.

In addition to the main block, the project encompasses six blocks of sophisticated two-bedroom and three-bedroom villas, designed to cater to the discerning tastes of high-end tourists. Adding to the allure is a standalone presidential villa, designed to exude the epitome of luxury, boasting three bedrooms, a lounge, dining room, kitchen, and a gazebo, among other opulent amenities.

Yet, beneath the grand vision lies a protracted and contentious battle over land ownership. Kango Enterprises Limited has found itself embroiled in legal disputes with the late British citizen, John Presser Unsworth, over the contested piece of land.

Raila Odinga, one of the company’s directors, found himself testifying in Malindi High Court back in 2011, asserting that he had acquired the land from the former Malindi mayor, Frederic Kazungu Diwani. It was revealed in court that Mr. Diwani had fraudulently sold the same land to Mr. Unsworth, leading to a ruling in favor of Kango Enterprises Limited on August 5, 2022. A Gazette notice was subsequently published on June 9, notifying the public of the issuance of a new title deed to the company.

Amidst the legal battles and complex land ownership issues, the proposed luxury hotel project has also undergone stringent environmental scrutiny. An environmental impact assessment report, submitted to the National Environmental Management Authority (NEMA) in June, identified several potential negative impacts.

These included the loss of vegetation cover, generation and management of solid waste, increased water and energy demand, and other social concerns. However, the report outlines a comprehensive set of mitigation measures to address these environmental and social challenges throughout the project’s lifecycle.

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