Naivas founder's children in court battle over control of estate

Three of eight living siblings are fighting over right to manage the multi-billion estate.

In Summary
  • Their elder brother Simon Gachwe Mukuha was established as the executor in 2016 after a prolonged court battle but died three years later.
  • Each of the three siblings want to replace their late brother as the estate administrator.
Thika Road Naivas supermarket during its launch.
Thika Road Naivas supermarket during its launch.
Image: FILE

The vast wealth of the late Peter Mukuha, founder of Naivas chain of supermarkets remains at the center of dispute with three of his eight living children fighting over the position of estate administrator.

Newton Kagira Mukuha, Grace Wambui Mukuha and David Kimani Mukuha separately filed cases before Chief Magistrate Heston Nyaga of High Court in Nakuru with each seeking to be installed as the estate administrator-cum-executor.

They filed their cases after their elder brother who was the administrator, Simon Gachwe Mukuha, died on August 26, 2019.

Trouble started soon after their father died in 2010 and Kagira immediately moved to court to oppose the choice of Gachwe as the executor and administrator of their late father's estate.

Gachwe was established as the executor in 2016 after a prolonged court battle but died three years later before completing the distribution of the estate which includes prime properties in different parts of the country.

Each of the three siblings want to replace their late brother as the estate administrator.

Throughout Gachwe's tenure as administrator, he battled a civil case filed by his siblings opposing his appointment besides other succession cases filed by Kimani.

Upon Gachwe's appointment, he claimed the Will had been left behind by their father but his siblings strongly opposed the legality of the document in court.

The first to seek orders to be established as administrator was Kagira in August 2022, followed by Wambui in November, 2023, and finally, Kimani filed his suit a fortnight ago.

Last week, Justice Nyaga said he would proceed to rule on the earlier applications by Kagira and Wambui because the latest one had not been dealt with.

“The parties who had filed their cases earlier, especially Kagira, have raised issues with the latest suit by Kimani because the court had given directions on their applications and a ruling date already set,” the Judge said.

On August 4, 2022, Kahiga filed summons for revocation of the grant issued to Gachwe while Wambui filed summons for rectification of the grant on May 26, 2023.

She later filed summons for revocation of grant dated November 16, 2023 and withdrew her earlier application.

Kagira observed that the grant issued was rendered useless upon Gachwe’s death and further claimed that the three beneficiaries had consented to him being appointed the administrator of the estate and the executor of their father’s Will.

Kagira said his brother died before completing administering their father’s estate adding that the property risk being wasted if he was not established as the administrator.

Kimani filed a response to the two applications saying five other beneficiaries were in concurrence that Gachwe completed the execution of the estate.

Peter Mukuha was survived by nine children.

Last week, the High Court in Nakuru suggested that the heirs to the multi-billion Naivas chain of supermarkets jointly administer the estate.

The court adjourned the case and gave the siblings seven days ending Wednesday to come up with a consent on who should be installed as the administrator or alternatively execute the estate jointly.

When the hearing resumed on Wednesday, the court was told that Kagira had consented to his sister, Wambui being the administrator.

“My decision has been informed by the need to end the dispute and secure the estate,” Kagira said.

However, Kimani told the court that he received consent signed by Kagira only yet there were six other beneficiaries, him included.

Kimani’s lawyer told the court that his client was opposed to Wambui being appointed as the the administrator.

The civil case resumes hearing on March 11 when Justice Nyaga will deliver a ruling on an application by Kimani.

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