A succession battle has emerged pitting the widow of slain University of Nairobi lecturer and the don’s four adult children.
The controversy surrounds a multimillion-shilling estate — including rental houses, land, vehicles, cash in bank and shares in various companies listed at the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE).
Professor Stephen Musembi Nzuve was murdered in cold blood on December 12, 2015, by armed robbers at his home in Tala, Machakos County.
The don was at the gate of his homestead at dusk after dropping off his wife’s guests in Tala Town when the thugs emerged and forced him out of his vehicle after threatening to shoot his wife.
Prof Nzuve complied after his wife, Mrs Rose Nzioki Musembi, who was being held at gunpoint by one of the thugs, pleaded with him to co-operate.
The thugs then took Prof Nzuve to his upstairs bedroom and, after ransacking the room for unknown documents, shot him at point-blank range.
And even as a murder case goes on at Kangundo Principal Magistrate’s Court against Mr Cyrus Mutunga and three others, an inheritance battle pits the widow, whom he married in 2010, against his four children from a deceased first wife.
The children allege that Mrs Musembi has secretly filed and concluded a succession case in respect of the estate without informing them.
According to documents at the Kangundo Law Courts, the widow indicated that she and her two children were the only dependants of the don and obtained a confirmation of letters of administration as the sole heir of the estate.
But on learning of the scheme to disinherit them, the children of the first wife instructed Patrick Karanja Company Advocates to seek revocation of the grant issued to their stepmother.
According to court papers filed at the High Court in Machakos, the children have asked the High Court in Machakos to have their father’s estate re-administered and a new grant sufficiently providing for them issued.
The case came up on March 22 when Justice Nyamweya directed the file from Kangundo transferred to the High Court.
The judge further ordered Mrs Musembi not to deal with any property of the estate in any way.
Justice Nyamweya further gave the lawyers of the widow and the children 30 days to reach an amicable agreement.
The case comes up for hearing today.