Mumias Sugar Company Serrai Group

Court Halts Operations of Mumias Sugar, Days after Successful Cane Crushing Test.

Mumias Sugar Investors will have to wait longer as Uganda-based Sarrai Group has suffered a major blow on Thursday, as the High Court in Nairobi directed it to stop operations at Mumias Sugar Company, just weeks after the firm did a test run on cane crushing at the factory.

Judge Okwany ordered the return of all movables assets, machinery or equipment that had so far been removed from the premises of Mumias Sugar, ordering the company to return all the assets belonging to Mumias Sugar Company and directed the OCS at Mumias Police Station to facilitate it.

“Pending the hearing and determination of this application, Sarrai Group Limited, its directors, agents, employees, servants, subsidiaries and other affiliates including Mumias Sugar (2021) Limited, Rai Cement Limited be ordered to cease and desist any activity and all activities including the operation of machinery, dismantling, vandalism of machinery, removal of assets, or any other activity of whatever nature stored and situated within the premises of Mumias Sugar Limited,” Justice Wilfrida Okwany ruled.

The court further upheld its judgment issued on April 14, 2022, that nullified the lease granted to Sarrai Group on December 22, 2021.

“This court issue order restraining Sarrai Group from and its aforementioned agents or any other agents from commencing, continuing, or undertaking any activity under the lease dated 22nd December 2021,” the judge stated.

“The Officer Commanding Mumias Sugar Police Station be and is hereby ordered to facilitate the safe return of all vandalized and looted assets of Mumias Sugar in accordance with these orders,” the judge added.

During the hearing, Khaminwa and Khaminwa Advocates through lawyer Jackline Chepkemoi Kimeto had accused Sarrai Group of not obeying the court order that stopped it from operating the sugar miller.

“The continuing contempt of the court orders by the contemnors scandalizes and lowers the judicial authority and the dignity of the court.

“It is essential for the maintenance of the rule of law and order that the authority and the dignity of the Courts of the Republic of Kenya is upheld at all times and the contemnors blatant disobedience of the orders of the court ought not to be countenanced,” the lawyer said during her submissions.

The Uganda-based company did not appeal a court ruling that stop it from operating the sugar miller.

During the hearing, the petitioner presented photo evidence that show Sarrai Group personnel transporting equipment belonging to Mumias Sugar Company.

The photos presented also showed vandalized equipment, which the lawyer noted was wasting away.

“It has come to my knowledge that Sarrai Group is currently dismantling and vandalizing machinery and stripping away Mumias’ assets from the premises in a clear exercise aimed at cannibalizing its assets,” she added.

The petitioner further claimed that there is no supervising one Mumias Sugar premises since the day court terminated Sarrai Group lease.

She also said the Ugandan-based company has been relying on politicians who are promising them security.

“Sarrai Group activities have been emboldened by utterances made in politicians in public meetings that no one can stop it from operationalizing Mumias Sugar factory. These remarks are in the public domain,” Kimeto stated.

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