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Mediators to settle Nyachae family's dispute over vast wealth

 Former Cabinet minister and ex-Nyaribari Chache MP, Simeon Nyachae, during the requiem mass of the late George Saitoti in Nairobi on June 15, 2012. [Boniface Okendo, Standard]

The family of former powerful Cabinet member Simeon Nyachae will now settle its dispute over control of his vast estate before mediators.

This is after the Commercial Court directed Nyachae's two widows and son to engage in talks in order to settle the dispute filed before him.

Martha Mwango, Nyachae's first wife, filed the case against her co-widow Grace Wamuyu, and her stepson Leon Nyandusi seeking to block them from managing the family companies.

Mwango also sought orders to freeze the bank accounts of the companies. However, Justice Chacha Mwita directed that Wamuyu and Nyandusi should continue holding their positions in the family companies, but involve Mwango.

But before the talks could begin, Mwango's son Michael Nyachae sought to have the signatories restructured to include him. He demanded the changes as a representative of his mother.

However, his brother informed him that the court orders meant involvement and not altering or changing signatories to the accounts.

Mwango was seeking orders to bar her co-wife and stepson from operating bank accounts of all family companies.

Mwango's lawyer Christopher Orina had listed Nyachae's companies - Sansora Group Ltd, Sansora Ltd, Simbi Investors Ltd, Sansora Investments Ltd, Kabansora Ltd, Sansora Bakery Ltd, and Sansora Oil Mills Ltd - as interested parties.

He also urged Justice Mwita to bar Nyandusi from running the seven companies as a director or a managing director.

"The first and second respondent (Wamuyu and Nyandusi) be restrained from all bank accounts held by them that belong to any interested party herein and further, the honourable court restraints the second defendant from holding himself out as a director or a managing director of any interested party herein," Orina argued.

In another prayer, Mwango wanted the court to order her and Wamuyu to hold a general meeting to nominate new signatories to all bank accounts of the family's businesses, noting they are the only surviving widows of Nyachae.

 Simeon Nyachae's family will settle its dispute over control of his vast estate before mediators. [iStockphoto]

She claimed that Nyachae, who served as energy, finance, and agriculture minister, solely ran his companies and was the only signatory to all of the companies' bank accounts.

Mwango lamented that her co-wife and stepson have remained in charge of the companies yet Nyachae appointed executors.

Mwango's case drew yet another battle as her firstborn son, the East Africa Court of Justice judge Charles Nyachae, had filed another one before Family Court judge Eric Ogola seeking to bar Wamuyu and Nyandusi from managing the former minister's estate.

The senior Nyachae appointed Charles, Eric Nyachae, and Angela Nyachae, as administrators. The court allowed the trio to run the state on May 9, 2022.

Although Mwango claimed Nyachae was running the companies alone, in the succession case, Wamuyu and Nyandusi told the court that during Nyachae's lifetime, they were running his businesses and affairs under the Sansora Group and Kabansora.

Nyandusi, who filed a response on behalf of his mother, stated that Sansora acted as an agent, managing the deceased's properties since December 1, 2015. He said all the properties have since been bequeathed to various beneficiaries.

"For the avoidance of doubt, the company does not manage any of the deceased's residuary estate," said Leon adding that he, alongside his mother, has been acting strictly as the director of the company and not in an individual capacity.

The two also stated that after Nyachae died, they held a meeting with the executors and it was agreed that Sansora would continue managing the properties until they are distributed.

On September 9, 2015, the late Head of Public Service and Secretary to the Cabinet who served in President Daniel arap Moi and Mwai Kibaki governments, stated how he would pass on his wealth to his wives and children after his death.

The Ford People leader bequeathed each of his widows Sh1 million. He, however, gave Wamuyu an extra Sh2 million for her support and sacrifice in managing and running his business and nursing him when he was ill.

The senior Nyachae also gave each of his sons and daughters Sh500,000.

According to him, if his sons and daughters died before him, the wealth would have to be passed to his or her mother and if the mother passed, it would be passed to their siblings.

In the will, Nyachae stated that he has three wives; Wamuyu, Nyaboke and Mwango. He said that Charles, Kenneth, Michael, Joseph, Noah, and Esther are Mwango's children. At the same time, Samuel, Rosemary, Angela, Janice, and Jackline are Nyaboke's children. Eric, Leon, Lee and Pauline are Wamuyu's children.

He also had a daughter, Mary, with Drusilla Kamunto. Nyachae also revealed that he had another wife, Sylvia Nyokabi, and had three children with her, namely David, Moses and Felicity. Justice Mwita ordered the parties to appear on May 17.

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