An Egyptian lawyer filed a suit on Wednesday against Egypt’s prime minister and agriculture minister seeking to annul a sale of state land to Cairo-based private equity firm Egypt Kuwait Holding.
The lawyer, Shehata Mohamed Shehata, says Egypt violated a law on state land deals by selling the 52,000 feddans (54,000 acres) of land directly to the firm instead of by auction, according to a court document seen by Reuters.
He accuses the firm of committing another violation by using the land to build a housing compound, saying the contract states that the land must be used for agriculture, according to the court document.
Officials at the company’s offices in Cairo and Alexandria could not immediately be reached for comment. No-one was available to comment at the Ministry of Agriculture and a spokesman for the prime minister could not be reached.
It was the latest in a series of similar lawsuits since June when a court annulled the purchase by Egypt’s biggest listed developer, Talaat Moustafa (TMG), of land for its flagship Madinaty real estate project.
The government moved to resolve the Madinaty dispute by annulling the contract and reselling the land back to the company, yet analysts say this solution — while quelling some investor concerns — has not stopped new claims being lodged.