Sixty Seven (67) investors are seeking legal redress from Diamond Property Merchants Limited (DPM) in pursuit of Ksh. 97,202,000 after DPM reneged on its terms as advertised in its Bethany Phase 1V agribusiness project. This is after DPM failed to honor its obligations to the investors in its Kajiado based agribusiness project. In total Three Hundred and Twenty Five (325) investors were involved in this particular project alone.
The 67 investors initially applied for a class action case with the Institute of Arbitrators through their lawyer, hoping to benefit from a single filing since all the circumstances of the matter are similar, but the institute declined to appoint an arbiter, stating that each investor should pay the required application fee of Ksh.20,000. Some of the victims are too cash strapped, many repaying loans that they took for the investment, to afford that amount. The investors have also recorded statements with the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) Land Fraud Unit.
In its public communication and sales pitches on or around February 2017, DPM purported to own the parcel of land known as KAJIADO/ILDAMAT/5555, which it claimed it would sub-divide into 50*100 plots, at a purchase price of Ksh.500,000each for sale to investors, and issue individual titles to the investors within a contractual six (6) months. After payment for the plot(s), the investors were to pay an additional Ksh. 300,000 for a greenhouse(s) to be constructed on the plot(s) by third party agribusiness management companies that DPM had independently entered into management contracts with. These companies are Agro-Exchange Limited (AEL) and Nguzo International.
According to the (standard) contract, investors were to earn dividends from the sale of agricultural produce grown and marketed by the DPM appointed agribusiness companies.
To date, the investors have not received any dividends at all, no greenhouses have been constructed on their land and not a single title has been issued.
After becoming suspicious of the operations and motives of DPM, and following many empty promises from the management, the investors got together and did some preliminary investigations which revealed disturbing details, as follows;
1. The property/land on which the project was to be undertaken and which DPM had purportedly sub-divided and sold plots to the investors is not registered in the name of DPM. It is registered in the name of an individual by the name Mr. Hamud Osman Mohamed.
2. DPM received approximately Ksh. 210 Million from ALL the investors for purchase and management of greenhouses, which it was to remit to AEL and Nguzo International for said purposes. DPM remitted only Ksh 100 Million to AEL and diverted the rest of the monies to unknown destination(s). This capital diversion led to the collapse of the venture.
3. DPM was in the process of purchasing the land parcel from Mr. Hamud Osman but subsequently failed to pay the full purchase price, leading to Mr. Hamud opting to rescind the sale agreement between him and DPM. Therefore, as it stands now, DPM has absolutely no claim to said parcel. It is clear that DPM was transacting land that it did not own, which is a criminal offence.
4. All other properties that DPM continues to purport to own are not registered in the name of DPM, but in the individual names of the Directors of the company.
5. The Directors of DPM Ltd are two, Mr. NdunguHaiyaie and Mr. JosephatGichungeMwirabua, who is also the Member of Parliament for Tigania East.
It is clear that DPM deliberately misrepresented facts for purposes of obtaining money from members of the public, for purposes of an investment which they never intended to honor. Coming from a Member of Parliament who should act as a custodian and defender of the public he represents, makes this a case of brazen fraud and reeks of high level impunity.
Evidence Available from Investor’s Lawyer
1. Title deed for the property known as Kajiado/Ildamat/5555 in the name of Hamud Osman Mohamed
2. Current official search confirming Mr. Hamud as owner of said parcel.
3. A sample sale agreement for the purchase of a plot by one of the investors showing DPM was
selling to them plots within Mr. Hamud’s land presenting it as belonging to DPM.
4. The rescission notice issued by Mr. Hamud to DPM through his lawyer cancelling the transaction
relating to the land between him and DPM.
5. A sample letter by DPM to the investors responding to the investor rescission notice through the
investor’s lawyer which acknowledges that DPM received money for both the plot(s) as well as
for the greenhouse(s) from the investors.
6. A current CR12 confirming the identities of DPM Directors
7. A list of the 67 investors who have decided on this action.