Puzzle of flashy MP without bank accounts

Former Juja MP and joint government chief whip George Thuo

The wife to former Juja MP and joint government chief whip George Thuo is managing her late husband’s estate.

However, Judy Wamaitha and her son – Ian Gichuhi – obtained letters of grant based on an application that indicated Thuo’s estate was only worth Sh200 million.

Real estate

An inventory attached to the application indicates that Thuo, the founder of City Hopper Bus Company and a man who was in the forefront presidential campaigns for former President Mwai Kibaki, only invested in real estate and shares in some local companies.

None of the big cars Thuo drove when he was a chief whip or going round during political campaigns or bank accounts where he may have kept his money is in the list of his estate. Judy and Gichuhi were given powers in February 2017 by High Court Judge Aggrey Muchelule to manage the estate for the beneficiaries who include Thuo’s two daughters, Njeri and Ciru – who are still minors.

Thuo collapsed at Porkies Club in Thika before he was rushed to a nursing home then transferred to the Aga Khan Hospital in Nairobi where he was pronounced dead on November 18, 2013.

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Under the Law of Succession Act, Judy can still go back to court to include her late husband’s properties in the full and accurate inventory assets and liabilities of the deceased under Section 76, if she discovers other properties that belonged to her husband but were not included in the initial inventory.

In the application for letters of grant filed through Njoroge Regeru and Company Advocates, Judy and her son attached an inventory that comprised parcels of land and shares in local companies but did not indicate if the former MP had any bank accounts, cars or other properties.

According to Judy, her late husband had mainly invested in Nairobi, Thika, Kiambu and Machakos.

The man who loved white shirts had a piece of land in Kiambu municipality, Athi River, half an acre of land in Phase 2 Naivasha Garden and an apartment in Nairobi. He had also poured his money in shares such as 9,500 in Redline Limited, 950 Mikwika Investment Limited, Stalton 50 and Fanaka Merchants Limited 4.

It is this Redline Ltd and the widow who are currently facing charges alongside former Kenya Pipeline Directors Charles Tanui over a fraudulent payment of Sh28 million for the installation of transformers.

Thuo, who went on record as the first Government Chief Whip to be “whipped” off his powers following a successful election petition by his rival William Kabogo that challenged his election in 2007 as Juja MP, had no liabilities at the time of his death.

Summary judgment

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The City Hopper founder, who had been named as one of the major players in the transport sector, was in 2010 ordered by the then Commercial Court Judge, Lady Justice Martha Koome to pay Sh3 million for defaulting in premiums.

This was after the judge entered a summary judgment against Thuo, Judy and their company City Hopper.

APA Insurance Limited had moved to court claiming the company had defaulted on premiums for insurance cover and made numerous proposals to pay, which it did not honour.

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