Jacob Juma was killed on day he filed Sh2 trillion case against State
Jacob Juma, the controversial businessman who was killed on May 5, died on the same day that he filed submissions in a case in which he had sued the Kenyan government for Sh2 trillion in an international court.
He sued after the government cancelled his licence to Mrima Hill, a region in Kwale County believed to be so rich in rare earth minerals that the initial decision to allocate him the entire area remains a baffling mystery.
Juma is said to have organised a press conference the following day to report on the progress of the case.
He had claimed that Mining Cabinet Secretary Najib Balala asked him for a bribe so as not to cancel the licences to Cortec Mining, an allegation that Mr Balala vehemently denied.
The cancellation might, however, have had something to do with the manner and unclear circumstances in which the licence was granted in the first place.
The site is believed to have deposits of Niobium, Neodymium, Dysprosium, Europium, Terbium and Yttrium. Niobium is used to produce high-strength low alloy (HSLA), an additive to ordinary steel which increases its strength while reducing its weight.
Rare earths are crucial in making high-tech electronic products such as superconductors and miniature magnets, whose demand has exploded.
Cortec Mining Kenya, Cortec Pty and Stirling Capital Ltd had on May 5 filed submissions for their case against the government of Kenya, in which they sought compensation for the cancellation of their mining licence for rare earth minerals in Kwale, which they claimed are worth Sh61 trillion.
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SOURCE: Daily Nation