, NAIROBI, Kenya Jul 18 – Fresh wrangles over who should manage the property of the late billionaire businessman Gerishon Kirima have erupted within his extended family members.
This time round, daughters of the eldest wife to the late Kirima disowned one of their brothers Steve Kirima whom they claimed does belong to their father and therefore, should not claim a share of their father’s multi-billion property spread all over Nairobi and its environs.
Steve, an elected councillor of Nairobi Central Ward was the centre of controversy after he was denied access to Kirima House located on Moktar Dadar Street near the Jevanjee Gardens in Nairobi for the better part of Monday.
The standoff disrupted business at the busy building as other tenants were caught in the scuffle.
“We cannot allow him to access this building. He has no authority at all to manage or claim a share of my father’s property because he is not part of us. He is not our brother,” Kirima’s daughter Maria said, claiming that Steve was the son to a chief in Murang’a.
Her sentiments were echoed by her sister Ruth who questioned Steve’s presence at their city building.
“Look at him, he does not look like my late father at all. When you look at us and compare with him we are totally different. There is nothing in him that can tell you he is Kirima’s son,” Ruth said, and urged us to find out from Steve if indeed he belonged to Kirima.
“Go and ask him… he is there. He was just brought to our home by our late father to be educated. He got his education and he should now go away. He has no business asking to be part of us or demand a share of my dad’s fortune,” she added.
Steve who stood metres away listening to the conversation gave his side of the story, saying he did not understand why his sisters would wake up one day and decide they were disowning him yet “we have grown together all along.”
“Look at them, they are shameless, they are now disowning me and branding me a son of some chief in Murang’a yet I am their brother,” he said.
Steve told journalists he has been operating an office at his father’s Kirima House building and only to be turned away by guards stationed there by his sisters on Monday morning.
“I have all the rights to be in this building. It is my father’s building and I have a right just like any of Kirima’s sons and daughters to be entitled to a share of my late father’s property but they have stationed guards here,” Steve who belongs to one of the late Kirima’s first wife said.
Much of the property of the late Kirima is being controlled from an office at Kirima House on Moktar Dadar Street, which was the scene of Monday’s standoff.
Guards at Kirima House told journalists they were working under instructions and would only allow people in the building after thorough vetting from daughters of Kirima’s first wife.
Steve who was disowned by his sisters told journalists he was shocked to be turned away yet he had operated an office there.
“They even tried to do it when my other brother died recently, but I decided I better not cause scenes because I wanted my brother to be interred peacefully,” he said in reference to the late Samuel Ndei Kirima who died in a road accident in Nairobi last month.
On Monday, not even Alice – the daughter of Teresia Kirima, the youngest wife was allowed into the building which was tightly guarded by six armed Administration Police officers.
“I have been locked out, they are discriminating against Steve and myself, they are even saying my brother Steve does not belong to my late father and that he is not real brother. My sisters are not being sincere and this is all about the property of my father,” Alice said.
Asked why they were locking Alice and Steve out of the property, Maria who is Kirima’s eldest daughter said “we are just here to ensure a court order is enforced. They are not listed anywhere in the court order we have as trustees of the property and therefore, they have no business being here.”
Maria could not produce the copy of the court order which Alice and Steve said was non-existent.
Wrangles in the family started last year, soon after a section of the family went to his Kitisuru home and forcefully took him away to the Nairobi hospital where he was briefly admitted before being flown to a hospital in South Africa.
He died while undergoing treatment there and his body was flown to Nairobi and later to his home in Murang’a for burial.
Before and even after Kirima’s death, his family members were embroiled in unending legal tussle over the control of his property estimated at Sh700 million – according to court documents.
Independent sources place the family property’s worth at billions of shillings, mainly because much of his wealth is real estate and idle land whose market value has appreciated with time.