The Intermediate Court of Gasabo has ordered Gasabo District to halt, with immediate effect, its plans to evict Hotel Tech from the Remera-based controversial premises and to pay Rwf 8,200 in court fees.
The court presided over by Dativa Yankurije, heard that the proprietor of the Remera-based hospitality facility, Pascal Ndahiro, would incur losses if the district went ahead to implement its plans.
The district, in its letter dated January 13, 2011, signed by Marie Louise Uwimana, the vice Mayor in charge of social affairs, on behalf of the Mayor, Willy Ndizeye, had given Ndahiro only two days to vacate the premises.
Failure to comply, the copy of the letter obtained by The New Times, partly states, would be forced eviction.
This forced Ndahiro to apply for an injunction to stop the district from going ahead with what he termed as “illegal orders.”
The controversial land, owned by the family of Theodore Barakengera, is supposed to be sold to implement orders of Biryogo and Kacyiru Gacaca courts, which ordered its sale.
Barakengera, a former director general of Kigali Central Prison, commonly known as 1930, was found guilty by the two semi-traditional courts of looting during the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi, and ruled that his premises in Remera, currently occupied by Hotel Tech, be auctioned to compensate the victims.
Ndahiro’s lawyers, Felix Mutarindwa and Fulgence Simbizi, told the court that the district’s decision would lead to illegal dismissal of hotel employees, affect his stock of purchased goods, which would go bad and that he would not be compensated the money he invested in the property.
Ndahiro is seeking a compensation of Rwf 76 million, which he allegedly used to refurbish the facility, including building a kitchen, toilets and a parking yard.
The lawyers also informed the court that their client had won tenders for outside catering and that the immediate eviction would ruin his business and incur heavy losses.
The district lawyer, Gisiene Niyongira, however, argued that Ndahiro sued a wrong institution, adding that the district was only implementing orders from the Office of the Ombudsman.
He argued that Ndahiro’s case is not urgent as he claims and that he was given enough time to vacate the premises, which he intentionally ignored.
The Ombudsman office, last December held a meeting with all concerned parties to bring to an end the saga. During the meeting, also attended by Ndahiro, he was given 10 days to vacate the premises to implement the Gacaca orders of selling the property to pay the victims.
In her ruling, however, Yankurije noted that Ndahiro had legal basis to seek an injunction.
“This court has decided that Pascal Ndahiro remains in plot No.3315, which he uses for business purposes (Hotel Tech), until court case No.0003/12/TG/GSBO is concluded,” Yankurije said in her ruling.
Ndahiro has another case in the same court demanding that Gasabo District pay him over Rwf 10 million in damages, of which Rwf 2 million is meant to meet legal costs.