High Court judges have vested control of a Sh20 billion estate to former Tetu MP James Ndung’u Gethenji in a court battle pitting him against his elder brother.
Mr Gethenji, is the controlling shareholder of Kihingo Village (Waridi Gardens) and Kihingo Village (Waridi) Management One (KVWGML) which owns the high-end estate.
Together with his elder brother Gitahi Gethenji who had filed a different case, they inherited the multibillion — shilling property from their father.
Waridi Gardens Estate in Kitisuru, Nairobi consists of 55 housing units each with a Sh400 million value and a Club House valued over Sh4 billion.
Justices Loise Komingoi and Margaret Muigai in deciding in favour of the young Gethenji said the two cases were pegged on control of the estate and the club house.
The duo are sons of former Tetu MP Joseph Augustine Gethenji who before joining politics was Director of Personnel Management (DPM) in the first government of the late President Jomo Kenyatta.
The late patriarch also served as a Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Labour in the government of former President Daniel arap Moi.
Rescue us from ex-MP, Kihingo residents cry to DPP
Residents of an upmarket estate engaged in a tussle with their neighbour and former MP Ndung’u Gethenji now want the Director of Public Prosecution Noordin Haji to intervene.
Tired of constant run-ins with the ex-MP who sold the houses in the posh Kihingo Village in Kitusuru to them, the residents want Haji to direct Gigiri police to investigate the various complaints they have lodged with the station, part of which landed Gethenji in court two weeks ago.
They include assault of one of the residents — Kishore Dhanji Varsani — and lawyer George Wajackoyah. Besides their plea to the DPP, the residents are pursuing various cases in court, all arising from contested ownership of a company which manages their estate.
“Our clients are living in perpetual fear, face abuse and harassment and fear for their personal safety. They have invested heavily to live in their dream homes only to be constantly harassed by persons acting in contempt of court,” a letter by their lawyer Allen Gichuhi says.
Besides Varsani and Gethenji, other residents of the luxurious village include newly wed Kirinyaga Governor Anne Waiguru, Gethenji’s brother Gitahi Ndung’u and media personality William Pike.
The Kirinyaga Governor is not however party to the present squabbles said to pit 53 of the 55 houses against Gethenji. They aver that their happiness as homeowners is “suspended” owing to unending disputes and palpable impunity of some of the people involved.
When they bought their houses, the residents have claimed in their court papers, they committed themselves to a single management company – Kihingo Village (Waridi Gardens) Management Ltd — where they owned a share each.
Somewhere along the way, a new management company — Kihingo Village Management One Ltd — surfaced from the blues with a different shareholding structure controlled by Gethenji. A 2016 arbitration on the matter however knocked off the new shareholding structure.
Subsequently, the residents met under the auspices of the original management company, officially quashed off the new shareholding structure and voted out Gethenji and his associates from the company.
A flurry of court cases ensued thereafter as residents sought to enforce the arbitration orders even as Gethenji dug in. It is these cases and their offshoots that have erupted into the present controversy leading to Gethenji’s arrest and the letter to the DPP.
Among them is one seeking to restrain Gethenji from passing himself out as a director of the original management company and another on contempt of court for allegedly defying a “status quo” order on the shareholding matter.
“Some have suffered immense loss as tenants vacated the estate or refused to take up the leases after learning that their quiet enjoyment will be affected. Your urgent intervention will be greatly appreciated,” Gichuhi’s letter to the DPP says.
A final ruling on one of the civil case over management and ownership is due on September 26. Other pending cases include defamation case against Gethenji brought about by one of the house owners Sheetal Khana.