A grandson of former President Daniel Arap Moi has been evicted from his residential house over rent arrears amid a court battle with his stepmother and stepbrother over the family estate.
Collins Kibet Toroitich, 45, on Monday, informed the High Court in Milimani that he was evicted last week and is now in the streets because he has no money to either provide for himself or his family.
According to court papers, the rent arrears have accumulated to more than Sh240,000 for the six months that he has not paid his landlord.
He is complaining of exclusion from the management of a multi-billion shilling estate left behind by his father, Jonathan Kipkemboi Moi.
Jonathan died on April 20, 2019, and his wealth is said to be worth billions of shillings after factoring in his share of inheritance from former President Moi’s estate.
At the time of his death Jonathan, unlike other tycoons, had not prepared a will on how his estate should be distributed to his family and dependants, a lacuna that has now set the stage for what could turn out to be another protracted succession battle involving the country’s prominent families.
His son Collins is now accusing his stepmother Sylvia Cherotich and stepbrother Clint Kiprono of failing to provide for him despite him being a dependant of the estate and a biological child of Jonathan.
The administrators of the estate are Sylvia and Clint.
Collins says the stepmother and stepbrother didn’t involve him when they obtained the court’s authority to manage the estate.
He has pleaded with the court to nullify the grant of representation to the duo.
“The deceased’s first house, where Collins comes from, is not being provided for and is not among the administrators. He was evicted from the house on Friday and is now on the streets. It is saddening considering the nature of the estate,” Collins’ lawyer Duncan Okatch told Justice Aggrey Muchelule.
He wants the court to introduce his client as a co-administrator of the estate and the dispute on assets’ management referred to mediation.
In addition, Mr Okatch wants the court to suspend the administrators, Sylvia and Clint, from conducting any transaction related to the estate pending the mediation. “The estate is actively being dealt with although the grant for letters of administration has not been confirmed. Funds are coming in (to the estate) and there is no accountability. He is the eldest son of the deceased,” he said.
Collins’ wife Gladys Jeruto and her children are also seeking to join the court battle so that their maintenance can be provided for by the estate as financial woes in the family deepen.
In 2016, Collins was charged in a Nakuru court with stealing two cell phones belonging to his daughter and a friend.
Jonathan’s widow is facing separate suits from two women, Beatrice Mbuli and Faith Nyambura, who want a share of the estate on grounds that they were his wives.
The two argue that they were sidelined from seeking a piece of Jonathan’s wealth, maintaining they were married to him through traditional ceremonies.
Just like Collins, they want the court to revoke and annul the Grant of Representation issued by Justice Muchelule to Sylvia and Clint on October 15, 2019. They argue that the document was obtained irregularly due to non-disclosure.
According to Sylvia, Jonathan’s estate was worth Sh30 million but Nyambura and Collins have disputed. But collins says his father’s estate is over Sh70 billion.
Sylvia indicated that the estate comprises a piece of land in Nairobi’s Industrial Area valued at Sh15 million and shares in Tiro Holdings Ltd (Sh10 million) and Nakuru Oil Mills (Sh5 million), according to court documents.
But Nyambura disputed the value of the estate as listed by Sylvia and claimed that it had been massively devalued. She contended that the estate is massive and the value runs to hundreds of millions of shillings.
She claimed that Sylvia was misappropriating and transferring assets to her name, without her (Nyambura’s) knowledge.
Sylvia married Jonathan in 1984 while Nyambura claims she had a Kikuyu customary wedding in December 2008.
Former president Moi, who dominated Kenyan politics for almost a quarter of a century to 2002, was regarded as one of the wealthiest persons in Africa.