Businessman Kamlesh Pattni has accused the Kenya Airports Authority of reneging on an out-of-court settlement. Pattni said the management, led by former managing director Lucy Mbugua, “misbehaved” and ignored contents of the agreement to be allocated shops as a condition for him to withdraw a legal claim against the agency.
Under the agreement, Pattni, through his company Duty Free Shops, had agreed that he would drop cases against KAA and forgo the Sh4.2 billion court award as damages after the state agency forcefully evicted his company from the airport. “I am willing to let it go and I ask the committee to order that KAA meets with us and draws an agreement,” Pattni told the Public Investment Committee of the National Assembly.
He said KAA ignored a clause within the agreement that restricted the state agency from contracting a competitor to run duty free shops at the airports. “I did this agreement in good faith and spirit but it was on condition that the shops must not be allocated to our competitors,” Pattni said.
KAA contracted and gave Dufry International exclusivity in running of shops after Pattni’s were removed. Mbugua earlier told the committee:
“They said they could not fulfil their part of the agreement because we had not given them space at the Mombasa airport.” Pattni denied that he was shifting goalposts after he was given the space at the Mombasa airport and started making demands for more space at JKIA Terminal 4, which was not part of the initial agreement.