High Court at Nairobi (Milimani Law Courts)
Kanini Farm Ltd v Commissioner of Lands  eKLR
Kanini Farm Limited v Commissioner of Lands
High Court, at Nairobi November 29, 1984
Land Acquisition Act Appeal No 1 of 1981
Compulsory acquisition - of land – by government – under the Land Acquisition Act (cap 295) – compensation upon acquisition – assessment of adequate compensation – basis of value – where land was originally agricultural – application for change of user made – change of user approved before acquisition - whether compensation should be based on value of residential property as opposed to agricultural property – factors to be considered when assessing the value.
Compulsory acquisition – of land – by government – payment of compensation – proper recipients of compensation – factors to be considered when assessing value – whether speculative value should be taken into account.
The appellants’ land was compulsorily acquired by the government under the Land Acquisition Act (cap 295). The appellant challenged the compensation awarded on the grounds that it valued the property as agricultural land when there had been a change of user to residential and that some of the recipients of compensation were trespassers of the land among other issues.
1. A person whose land is acquired is entitled to prompt payment of full compensation as a result of the acquisition as provided for under section 75 (1) (c) of the Constitution and section 8 of the Land Acquisition Act (cap 295).
2. When land is compulsorily acquired under the Land Acquisition Act an inquiry to determine the persons interested in the land, the value of the land and the compensation to be paid must be held as required by section 9 (3) of the Act.
3. Market value as a basis for assessing compensation is the price which a willing seller might be expected to obtain from a willing purchaser, the purchaser may be a speculator but a reasonable one.
4. The changes of user of the suit land, from agricultural to a residential character was approved before the acquisition, therefore it was fair and just that the property should be treated as residential in assessing compensation.
5. In determining the amount of compensation which ought to be paid the court should take into account comparable sales and awards on other acquisition of land of similar character.
6. The burden is on the appellant challenging the adequacy of the compensation to prove that the award of compensation is wrong.
Appeal allowed, award increased accordingly.
1. Many v The Collector Under Indian Land Acquisition Act  EA 125
2. New Munyu Sisal Estates Ltd v Attorney-General  EA 88
3. Collector v Heptulla  EA 555
4. Collector v Kassam Shivji Bhimji  EA 1063
1. Land Acquisition Act (cap 295) sections 8; 9(1),(3); 20
2. Constitution of Kenya section 75(1)(c)
3. Indian Acquisititon Act 1894
4. Schedule to the Land Acquisition Act rules 2,3