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Shock as Kenyan woman, Anne Kihagi-Swain, is fined $2.4M by US court

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A Kenyan landlady who has been described as notorious by the media , Anne Kihagi, who was sued by the SF city attorney two years ago after numerous reports about her shady eviction tactics and unfair treatment of tenants, has been ordered to pay $2.4 million and has also been sentenced to five days in jail for violating provisions of the Ellis Act at one of her properties in West Hollywood.

 

The news was received with shock among Kenyans.

“A Kenyan woman has been fined US$2.4 million (Sh247.5 million) by an American court for being an abusive landlord,” reported a Kenya paper.

Ms Anne Kihagi has been accused of harassing 23 tenants and wrongfully evicting 10 others by using unconventional methods to frustrate among them the elderly and a cancer patient.

Ms Kihagi, a landlord with a portfolio of property worth $24 million (Sh2.5 billion) was also sentenced to five days in a San Francisco jail for violating the housing law.

This is after a two-year bruising court battle with her tenants who have christened her the “notorious landlord”.

In fact, Ms Kihagi may end up being fined up to $4 million (Sh412.5 million) since the judge also ruled

Anne Kihagi

that she must foot the costs incurred during the case.

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Ms Kihagi’s run-ins with her tenants began two years ago when they complained of harassment and uncouth tactics that their landlord used to evict them so she could renovate the building and rent it out at a higher price.

VERBAL AB– USE

According to a report by San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera, the tactics used by Ms Kihagi included: “Fraud, harassment, threats, intimidation, verbal abuse, interrupting gas, electric, water and cable service, failing to cash rent cheques, only to late claim them as untimely rent payment and violating tenants’ privacy by entering their apartments without required notice”.

The tenants also accused Ms Kihagi of installing video surveillance cameras aimed at their front doors.

Ms Kihagi has since garnered a reputation for being a horrible landlord, with Mr Herrera saying, “I’ve gone after a lot of lawless landlords in my time, but Anne Kihagi has a special place reserved for her in San Francisco’s abusive landlord ‘hall of fame’. Her cruelty is stunning.”

In her ruling, Judge Angela Bradstreet noted that Ms Kihagi’s behaviour had serious effects on the lives of several citizens of San Francisco, to the point that one former tenant had to quit her job and move out of the state. In another case, Ms Kihagi forced a tenant suffering from cancer out of his home.

READ ALSO:   VIDEO: Eugene Wamalwa's relative to be deported from US after court rejects appeal

The court case was under investigation for two years and the ruling attracted a lot of media coverage from San Francisco press.

The US based media have reported that Ms Kihagi irked her tenants so much that some housing rights activists took to the streets to protest against her.

BUSINESS MODEL

US newspapers have reported that Ms Kihagi began buying property in June 2013 in Noe Valley, the Mission and North Beach and the Castro, making her the owner of over 50 units in San Francisco.

It is also reported that Ms Kihagi is working closely with two business associates, Julia Mwangi and Christine Mwangi, known as “The Mwangi sisters” who were jointly sued by the tenants. She also has property in Los Angeles and West Hollywood.

Her business model involves buying buildings with long-term, “rent-controlled tenants paying below-market rents and then using a wide range of methods, both legal and illegal, to get rid of the tenants,” a San Francisco newspaper reported.

Once she pushes out the tenants, Ms Kihagi allegedly makes unpermitted improvements in the buildings after which she rents them at a higher price.

Ms Kihagi, who is being represented by her lawyer Karen Uchiyama, blames the case on a tenant activists group that wanted to “make a scapegoat of Anne Kihagi”.

READ ALSO:   VIDEO: Cases of Kenyan hosts in US mistreating new comers from Kenya on the rise

The lawyer further accused the court of scaring landlords from evicting tenants. The lawyer maintained that Ms Kihagi acted within the law even in evicting the tenants. Meanwhile, Ms Kihagi is appealing the ruling.

-Nairobi news

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Diaspora

VIDEO-Diaspora meet to address Big Four Agenda

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Opposition leader Raila Odinga, who is also the African Union High Representative for Infrastructure Development, will be among prominent leaders who will address the Diaspora convention which is taking place in Nairobi between December 17, 2019 and December 19, 2019 at the Ole Sereni Hotel.

Speaking to the Nation in Nairobi, the President of Kenya Diaspora Alliance (KDA) Shem Ochuodho said among the keynote speakers will be Mr Siddharth Chatterjee UN Resident Coordinator, Danish Ambassador to Kenya Mette Knudsen and Mr Jerome Otieno, Group MD Life, UAP Old Mutual, East Africa.

Prior to the 2017 General Elections, Mr Odinga championed diaspora issues, especially voting rights for Kenyans living abroad.

Dr Ochuodho said the theme for this year’s convention is “Diaspora: The Big Four Agenda”.

On the recently launched Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) report, Dr Ochuodho said despite its many flaws, it at least promises to address contentious issues contained in the dual citizenship clause in the Constitution.

“One is that they are talking of doing away with restrictions on dual citizens holding public offices, or to be State officers. Secondly, it is also talking about finding ways in which diaspora can be infused and incentivised to invest at home,” he said.

READ ALSO:   VIDEO: Eugene Wamalwa's relative to be deported from US after court rejects appeal

BY Nation

 

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Business

SPONSORED: Optiven Thanks Diaspora Community as Hundreds are offered fully Paid Holiday for a Record 6th Time

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Optiven Group has a vision of economically and socially empowering and Transforming the society. As a follow-up to this vision, hundreds of customers whose majority are from Diaspora were given a treat of the end of year at PrideInn Flamingo Beach Resort – Mombasa.

This offer was for all those who had invested during the promotion of Tujibambe Mombasani where one was to purchase and pay a property from 1.7M and above.

This was right on the heels of the prior campaigns as follows:

👉🏽Tembeza Mpenzi – Amboseli https://youtu.be/gdu935WbGcI

👉🏽Dinner with a LION – Maasai Mara https://youtu.be/9PKv6ljLAho

👉🏽Lipa CashTwende Mombasa SEASON 3 https://youtu.be/a8hper39wj0

👉🏽Lipa CashTwende Mombasa SEASON 2 https://youtu.be/ZdvPaEU8EY8

👉🏽Lipa CashTwende Mombasa SEASON 1 https://youtu.be/V80a-jaFZlk

Optiven is happy to bring these great customers together to network. Know each other & build a strong community

We now look forward to rewarding hundreds of customers who are catching up with our current campaign TAJIRIKA NA OPTIVEN APP campaign.

This campaign rewards customers who purchase land through the Optiven App. It also rewards those who refer others through the App. It is a win win as all parties benefit. This is actually giving every Kenyan globally to have a piece of Optiven.

👉🏽Tajirika Na Optiven App – https://youtu.be/2TGPRXffI28

Join the Optiven family today and keep enjoying our Philanthropic offers and give aways from time to time.

READ ALSO:   59-year-old Kenyan man in US faces up to 20 years jail term after pleading guilty to fraud

Call us/ WhatsApp us on: +254 723 400 500
Website: www.optiven.co.ke

 

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Diaspora

I just turned 40…I came to the US when I was 20; What Have I Learned?

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BY JANE MUKAMI

It has been 20 years since I arrived in the U.S. from Kenyan – where did time go? I was 20 years old when I got to Atlanta with no idea how life would unfold. Now at 40 years old, What have I learned?

  1. The land of milk and honey does provide opportunities for success but nothing is handed to you…you gotta milk the cow AKA work hard for the milk and honey. My 1st job was a cashier at Wendy’s making $5.50 [500/=] an hour, but that was just the beginning #StartWhereYouAre #StartWithWhatYouHave.
  2. Success is relative and should be defined by you and not by society. My definition of success is being happy doing what I love while experiencing freedom – debt freedom, financial freedom and location freedom – ability to serve my clients/work from anywhere in the world #DefineYourSuccess.
  3. Success requires continued learning/education, breaking away from doing the same ol’ things, with the ol’ same people. Growth comes from finding new circles, friends, hiring coaches/mentors, people who inspire + push you to become who you were created to be. It’s ok to be a small fish in a big pond. It gives you room to grow into a whale #LevelUp.
  4. Life’s too short to sweat the small stuff – have fun, laugh, enjoy your journey, protect your space by decreasing negativity, drama, toxic friendships or relationships that do not serve you. Do not worry about what others think or say about you. Focus on you, be intentional about what you want and make it happen – mute all else #GoGet #NoExcuses #StayHungry #StayHumble
READ ALSO:   BREAKING NEWS: Man from Kenya charged with serial-killing 12 elderly people in US by smothering them, given $9M bail [VIDEO]

Read more about my “Coming to America” story on my website.

Atlanta has been good to me…do I qualify for the title #GeorgiaPeach Even though I don’t like sweet tea, fried chicken, pork rinds, biscuits and gravy, grits, waffles and fried chicken…I’m I the only one still very confused by the words chicken fried steak…?? 🤣🤣

Funny enough, I feel as though the past 20 years were simply a rehearsal, a warm up, a preparation of sorts – my life is just now beginning #selfactualized I’m excited….its #GoTime.  Cheers to 20 more 🥂🥂🇱🇷

 

 

 

 

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