Whether the tribunal has jurisdiction to entertain a claim for damages?
11.The above provision accords the Tribunal additional powers to investigate any complaints relating to controlled tenancies and make orders as they deem fit. In the present case, despite the fact that the Tenant is no longer in the premises, the suit matter originated at a time when a tenancy relationship still existed between the parties. Additionally, the means by which the relationship was terminated was not in accordance to the procedures stipulated under Section 4 of CAP 301.
12.The tenant has filed their claim and presented before this Tribunal that they were not issued with a notice as is statutorily required under section 4 of CAP 301. Further they have stated that in addition to the Landlord locking the premises they also proceeded to confiscate their goods.
13.The Tribunal gave orders on 7th October requiring that the Landlord return the goods back to the tenant which was done on October 18, 2022, however the Tenant avers that due to the nature of the business they were carrying on some of the goods had gone bad.
14.The Landlord has in response to the Tenant’s claim for damages filed an affidavit dated November 14, 2022 alleging that the tenant’s averments are false and that they should proof the same. They have also presented in the aforementioned affidavit that they do not owe the tenant security deposit for rent, water and electricity which are some of the items that the tenant would want compensation for.
16.In Tribunal Case No 8 of 2019 Robert Ayieko Angoi v Lena Sarange  eKLR, where the matter was instituted by virtue of a Notice of Termination issued to the tenant by the landlord. The tenant did not file a Reference opposing the said notice and as a result, the Court gave orders allowing Landlord to evict the tenant.
17.The tenant thereafter filed for stay of the above orders and averred that there was no tenancy relationship between themselves and the landlord. When the matter later came up for hearing the Tribunal proceeded to order that the premises be reopened and returned to the landlord.
18.The Tenant aggrieved by the above decision proceeded to appeal through ELC Appeal No 12 of 2019. During the appeal several matters arose which the appellate court felt were not fully addressed by the Tribunal. One such matter was the question on the tenancy relationship between the parties.
19.The appellate court established that the owner of the premises had leased the premises to both the tenant and the landlord without their knowledge. This as a result, created a scenario where the tenant was a sub-tenant of the alleged landlord despite there being no lease agreement between them. This then explained why the landlord had issued the tenant with a notice to terminate. The Tribunal did not investigate this issue prior to issuing of the Ruling and as such did not give an explanation as to why they returned the premises back to the landlord.
20.Based on the above the Court was of the opinion that the only recourse available for the tenant was damages for loss of tenancy. The Court stated that:
21.Based on the holding above, the Court further established the Jurisdiction of the Tribunal to assess and award damages in a matter relating to a Controlled Tenancy.
22.In the case of Antique Auctions Ltd v Pan African Auctions Ltd  eKLR the Court of Appeal defined the term damages according to the McGregor book on Damages as follows:
23.The Tribunal in Tribunal Case No 8 of 2019 Robert Ayieko Angoi v Lena Sarange  eKLR stated in relation to the form of damages that;
25.While differentiating between special and general damages the Court of Appeal in the case of Antique Auctions Ltd v Pan African Auctions Ltd  eKLR stated that;
27.The tenant filed a claim and was awarded General Damages of Kshs 300,000 plus costs and interests by virtue of the fact that they had suffered loss of business. The Landlord filed an appeal and one of the grounds was in relation to the fact that the Trial Court had awarded the tenant general damages in a matter involving a breach of contract. The appellate court upheld the decision of the trial Court.
29.I wish to place reliance on the above case in my determination to award General Damages to the tenant in this present case. The Landlord acted in a manner that falls within the ambit of the exceptions stated above. The landlord terminated the tenancy prematurely. They failed to issue the tenant with a notice to terminate as required under CAP 301 by virtue of their relationship being a Controlled Tenancy. Further, the Landlord took away the goods of the tenant and due to the perishable nature of the tenant’s business, some of the goods went bad.