The Koinange family is fighting to have the Village Market and the Tribe Hotel demolished. The Koinange family has petitioned the High Court to order the demolition, arguing that the property owners grabbed their land.
The family, through the children of former provincial commissioner Charles Karuga Koinange has asked the court to declare them as the rightful owners of the property and to kick out Greenhills Investments which owns Village Market.
They also want Village Market and the Tribe Hotel to pay for damages for illegal occupation or compensation at the current market rates. They argue that the property owners must have acquired the title deed to the property illegally.
In addition, the family wants a loan of Sh. 8.5 billion that Greenhills Investments took from KCB to develop the Village Market declared invalid.
However, Greenhills has responded and told the court that it is the rightful owner of the property. It has requested the court to order the Attorney General and the Chief Registrar of Land to appear in court and clarify who the rightful property owner is.
Greenhills says that it acquired the property when it was filled with coffee bushes. Today, the complex is worth an estimated Sh. 15 billion. The seven-acre land where it is located is worth an estimated Sh. 1.6 billion.
Located in the Gigiri area, the Village Market accommodates over 150 stores outlets covering 210,000 square feet (20,000 m2) of retail space, 20,000 square feet (1,900 m2) square feet of office space, in addition to recreation and entertainment facilities. The Village Market adjoins the Tribe Hotel, a 5 star hotel with 142 guest rooms and suites.
The complex was founded by two brothers, brothers, Hamed and Mehraz Ehsani. Their objective was to provide a shopping and recreation experience for Gigiri’s residents which include diplomats, expatriates and tourists living and/or working within the Nairobi’s Diplomatic District and its immediate environs. Construction works began in April 1992 with a proposed 10 shops.