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Nakumatt claims Sh11bn from Nyali landlord, auctioneers for damages

Troubled Nakumatt Holdings now wants its former landlord and an auctioneer to admit liability worth billions in losses it incurred during its eviction early this year.

In a letter to Ideal Locations Ltd and Makuri Auctioneers Ltd, the retailer, through law firm Ngonze and Ngonze, have also threatened to institute criminal, civil and professional disciplinary proceedings against the two for evicting them from City Mall in Nyali.

Nakumatt was on March 6 evicted from the mall building in Mombasa for failing to pay Sh27.8 million in rent arrears, service charges, and promotion fund.

They had obtained a court order stopping the same.

See: [VIDEO] Nakumatt evicted from City Mall a day after court order

Nakumatt, in the September 10 letter, says they reached a lease agreement on June 9, 2014, to occupy the suit premises for 11 years.

“You illegally, irregularly and unprocedurally extracted a decree arising from a court case that caused Nakumatt to be ejected from the premises.”

“The entire process was tainted with illegality, and unlawfulness due to non-conformity with the express mandatory provisions of the law,” the letter reads in part.

The retailer claims the process was riddled with innumerable acts of looting and vandalism, which was well within the landlord’s knowledge.

“You admit liability, for the acts, whereas we shall proceed to quantify our client’s claim for settlement without much further ado, which in any event, shall not be less than Sh11 billion.”

Also read: Bank occupying former Nakumatt Nyali premises vandalised

Nakumatt says Sh1billion will be for losses incurred through direct damage and looting of stock, fixtures, and fittings while Sh10 billion is projected losses incurred through lost income and lost business for the unexpired period of the lease agreement.

“The damages will also be due to the irreversible, injury to Nakumatt (the brand), with particular reference to the business, realised and actual footfall observed in all Nakumatt outlets countrywide following the recent #NakumattBounceBack initiative that received overwhelming support on social media,” the letter states.

By April, 14 mall owners withdrew their interest to continue housing the cash-strapped retailer.

Galleria, Nyali, and Karen Crossroads among others said Nakumatt has no hope of recovering to settle rent arrears leaving them with the risk of losing their buildings to banks for defaulting on loan repayment.

Vijay Lackhan, Nakumatt Mombasa manager, had earlier said that the eviction caused them billions of losses as they did not get time to remove their goods despite securing a court order.

The eviction order was issued by Justice Charles Yano, which gave Ideal Location Ltd, liberty to forcefully evict the once giant supermarket from the premises.

The judge also ordered that the supermarket pays all the outstanding rent accrued at the time of eviction over the Sh27.8 million, which was rent from November last year.

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