Kenya's Most Authoritative Political Newspaper

Citizen Weekly

Sunday, 11 January 2015

Former game-ranching employees seek Mutunga  intervention

Our Reporter

Former employees of Game-Ranching Limited who were sacked under unclear circumstances are seeking the intervention of Chief Justice Willy Mutunga to have their cases concluded. The employees sued the owner of the ranch, a Dr Hopecraft for unlawful dismissal and failing to pay them benefits in a case that has dragged in court for more than 10 years. It is alleged the owner of the over 20,000 acres expansive land in Kapiti Plains in Machakos county has been delaying the case by compromising judicial officers, forcing the claimants to relocate the case from Machakos Industrial Court in Nairobi. The case is due for a full hearing this before Judge J Mbaru of the Industrial Court.
The white man who now resides in his USA resort in Santa Fe has allegedly been using his manager at the ranch John Philip Tilley, an Australian expatriate, to make forged loses before the court with an aim of advancing his agenda of not paying the former workers their dues. He is believed to be a telephone rancher and absentee land owner wiring money generated by the land to invest it overseas. The enraged workers also demand Kenya Revenue Authority to investigate tax evasion claims by the expatriate with world that Machakos county is losing revenue due to rates defaulting by the ranch managers.
According to details from Mavoko subcounty offices, the ranch owes the subcounty money to the tune of more than Sh80 million in rates arrears. The Mzungu, according to workers, brags how he is close to President Uhuru Kenyatta and can circumvent justice and has of late used hit men to harass and threaten workers pushing for the case.
The threats have been recorded in various police stations in Nairobi. In the scheme, he is allegedly accused of using one Lewis Thuo who is the administration manager to threaten anyone pursuing the case.
They now demand the Chief Justice to quickly intervene and save them their sweat denied by the foreigner. They fear that their case may be compromised like before where judicial officers have been bribed in the last 10 years to bury it in the sand.