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High Court orders audit as man battles stepmother over Sh12m estate rent

By Daniel Chege | August 10th 2020 at 12:00:00 GMT +0300

A High Court in Nakuru has ordered an audit on income from two stores belonging to a late businessperson, Paul Itotia, in a bid to settle a Sh12 million rent dispute between the man’s son and his widow.

The son took his stepmother to court seeking to have a just sharing of the rent from the premises located at the heart of Nakuru town.

Itotia owned West Commercial Stores and customs and badges factory at industrial area, Nakuru town.

The incomes from the two estates were to be shared between his first wife Bernadette Wairimu and his second wife Lilian Kirigo when he (Itotia) died in 2018.

Wairimu also died and the rent collection of Sh500,000 per month was then to be shared between her son Peter Rugu and Kirigo.

Rugu, however, felt aggrieved over a two-year rent sharing formula forcing him to seek court intervention.

This prompted Justice Teresia Matheka to order an audit into the rent income of the premises from January 2018 to December 2019, amounting to Sh12,000,000.

Matheka asked Fredrick Omondi, an auditor, to carry out an inspection on the money deposits in three bank accounts and M-pesa accounts for the two years.

She equally directed the applicant (Rugu) to open a joint account with Kirigo where subsequent income from January 2020 would be deposited.

“Kirigo, through her agents Stephen Mwangi and Caroline Wairimu, should give access to the auditor to do his job,” the court directed.

Rugu had sought orders that he be allowed to collect rent from his father’s premises for a period of two years.

He feared that the two agents who have been collecting rent from January 2018 were not only sabotaging the rent collection, but also surrendering it to Kirigo.

“It will be fair and just if the applicant is allowed to collect rent for two years to bring him to an equal footing with the respondent,” he argued.

In opposition, the respondents claimed that the income from the store and factory has been equally shared between the two families for the two years.

The court asked the respondents to demonstrate this through bank papers. The case will be mentioned on September 2 for compliance confirmation.

Paul Itotia West Commercial Stores
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