“After he died, his children began arbitrarily increasing the rent every year for the past decade. They used to tell me that I should vacate if I am not able to pay the new rent. They eventually got an eviction order which I countered through my lawyer but they went on to evict me and destroy my property,” he said.
In court documents seen by the Nation, the landlord secured a vacation notice for the tenant dating back to 2015 and, after years of court battle, the landlord managed to secure an eviction order that was effected January 24, 2019, a matter the tenant has termed a total disregard of the law.
Through his lawyer, Oigoro Nyangito, Mr Thairu argued that he also managed to secure a court order to stop the eviction but the landlord defied the order dated January 25, 2019.
Mr Thairu argued that the January 25 order nullified the eviction order that had been secured a day earlier and security agencies were supposed to stop the eviction.
Nonetheless, the landlord’s children, through lawyer Rosemary Chege, countered that the vacation notice was long overdue as the tenant had been given up to May, 2018 to vacate but he did not do so.
Mr Thairu accused the police of taking sides, alleging that they stood by as his hotel was destroyed despite the massive looting that took place right under their noses.
"I have been a faithful tenant for the last 36 years paying rent as per our lease agreement without defaulting. I developed the land from scratch but it is painful to watch my investment go down in the drain. Law ought to be applied fairly as stipulated in the Constitution,’’ said the 74-year-old hotelier.
However, Karen OCPD Grace Wanja disputed his allegations saying due process was followed to during the eviction, adding that Mr Thairu’s order to suspend the eviction had been overtaken by events.
To salvage the brand name, Mr Thairu stated that he has now been forced to operate at a premise within Jamhuri Show Ground where he says that business has not been good and he has been incurring massive loses.
This, he stated, has forced him to lay off about 90 per cent of the employees he had and most suppliers contracts suspended. The hotelier has, nevertheless, vowed to seek compensation.