A presidential seat that has been a matter of court battle could be headed to a private international museum after the court halted the mediation process between the owner and the government.
Solomon Njoroge Kiore has been battling the Kenyan government for the last 30 years over the seat seeking Ksh195 million, a debt he now claims has risen to more than Ksh700 million.
The court asked Kiore to choose a museum of his choice where he would keep the chair that he revealed was taken back to his company years after being used by the president.
The order was missed after Arthuri Igeria, a mediator in the case, declared the government non-compliant with the process.
“This court does issue an order that the applicant (Kiore) do seek alternative storage in any institution or museum of the applicant’s choice with the maximum security of instruments in issue free of charge or with minimum charges until the determination of the case in issue,” the court order said.
Kiore’s company, Furncon Limited, last year agreed with the government to a court annexe mediation to solve the issue but, according to the mediator, the Attorney-General’s office failed to attend several sessions.
“The Honourable Attorney-General has consistently failed to comply with the mediation directions by not filling a case summary and not attending mediation sessions,” Igera said
After the mediation process was aborted, Kiore went back to court and got orders to seek a museum of his choice to keep the seat.
According to Kiore, the seat is an instrument of power having been used by a head of state for official functions. He said he has incurred a lot of expenses providing security for the seat as the case dragged in court.
Kiore has since written to several international organizations requesting them to acquire the seat for safe-keeping as per the court’s order.
The case came up from a contract he won in 1992 to supply presidential furniture but years later, the deal went sour when military officials returned the chair two years after President Daniel Arap Moi had used them.