Fight Over Nyachae’s Ksh 2bn Estate Takes A New Turn
Fight Over Nyachae’s Ksh 2bn Estate Takes A New Turn.
A new development emerged on Tuesday in the legal battle over a woman’s claim to a share of the late former Cabinet Minister Simeon Nyachae’s estate, as her daughter disowned the assertion that she was the offspring of the deceased Kisii politician.
Margaret Chweya is contesting her exclusion, along with her three children, from the list of beneficiaries of Nyachae’s Sh2 billion estate.
According to Margaret, she and Nyachae entered into a customary marriage in 1973, and they had three children together—Chweya Rodney David, John Paul Chweya, and Patricia Chweya.
However, during the recent court hearing, Patricia distanced herself from the name Chweya, claiming it does not exist, and clarified that her real name is Patricia Moraa Odero.
She asserted that her biological father is a man named George Gordon Odero, a fact confirmed by DNA tests.
The lawsuit, initiated by Margaret in 2022 and currently before High Court judge Eric Ogola, represents her and her three children.
Nevertheless, Patricia expressed her disapproval of the legal action, stating that she never consented to it and never signed any documents related to the suit.
This revelation adds a new layer of complexity to the ongoing legal dispute over the distribution of Simeon Nyachae’s substantial estate.
“Yes, she approached me on March 2, 2022 about what she wanted to do but I didn’t give my authority to institute this suit. She asked for my signature but I refused and told her I don’t feel comfortable,” she said.
She said the mother later assured her that she wouldn’t be included in the case only for her to learn later about her inclusion as an applicant.
“She gave me the assurance after I had protested 23 times against my inclusion in this case. That is because I know who my father is and that is not Nyachae,” Patricia said.
In the ongoing legal proceedings, Patricia’s name is listed as the fourth applicant, identified as Patricia Moraa Chweya Nyachae.
However, she informed the court that her actual name is Patricia Moraa Odero, emphasizing that the mentioned Patricia Chweya does not exist.
According to Patricia, she was born on December 19, 1987, at a hospital in California, USA. Her birth documents identify Margaret Chweya as her mother and George Odero as her father.
The Nyachae family, represented by the estate’s executors Charles Nyachae, Angela Nyachae, and Eric Nyachae, vehemently denied any association with Chweya and her children, refuting the claim of a familial connection.
The family’s legal representative, George Muchiri, asserted at the outset that they would present evidence demonstrating Margaret’s multiple marriages, contending that she was never wedded to Nyachae.
To delve into Chweya’s identity and marital history, the executors commissioned a thorough investigation, scrutinizing her relationships, marriages, children, and corresponding timelines.
The inquiry revealed that Chweya had been married to four different men, two in Kenya (Jacob Machuki Mokaya and Michael Pondo Migowa) and two in the US (George Gordon Odero and James Leroy Totten).
During her testimony in July of the previous year, Margaret denied being married to these men, although she acknowledged a ‘marriage of convenience’ with Totten.
In contrast, Patricia maintained that her mother was indeed married to Odero, asserting that she grew up recognizing him as her father.
This conflicting narrative adds complexity to the legal dispute surrounding Simeon Nyachae’s substantial estate.
“From the time I was two-years-old, I knew him as my father. I don’t know about their marriage certificate but they were married,” Patricia said.
During cross-examination, lawyer Danstan Omari asked Patricia why she was bitter with her mother.
“I am not. I want her to proceed with her case and wish her all the best, but I want myself removed from this matter because I have nothing to do with it,” she said.
Patricia however admitted that her mother had sometimes acted not in the best interest of her children.
“For example, she sought custody for me when I was young yet she knew she had no capacity to take care of me. That was contrary to my best interest,” she said.
Patricia said it is Odero who brought her up even though her mother “did her best”.
In her testimony, Patricia informed the court that she maintains a distant relationship with her mother, stating that they do not communicate on platforms such as WhatsApp or other social media channels.
Additionally, Patricia clarified that she does not share a close bond with her stepbrothers, Rodney and John Paul.
“I’m just close with my father and my other step brothers,” she said.
When questioned about the underlying bitterness within the family, Patricia referenced her marital situation, explaining that her mother disapproved of her husband.
The last time the mother and daughter had visited each other was in 2018, and they had a physical meeting for the final time in 2022..
“I still love her no matter how distant we are and I even pray for her but that doesn’t mean…….I support everything she does. I’m not bitter and there is no vendetta in this,” Patricia said.