Wife gets 20pc of naturalized US citizen’s wealth
An estranged wife of a naturalised US citizen has been granted Sh600,000 out of an estimated Sh20 million property she wanted to equally share with her husband.
Shumi Wairimu Abubakar was told by the High Court sitting in Nyeri that her contribution to the property owned by the lecturer was worth Sh600,000 and not half the value she was claiming from Robert Wanjohi Kingori, her estranged husband.
Justice Joseph Sergon gave the orders at the conclusion of a two-year legal row between the couple. The wife called three witnesses while the husband, who is a teacher in the US, gave evidence himself.
Ms Abubakar had sought a declaration that she was entitled to half the property owned by the husband claiming she had contributed in its accumulation monetarily and by time-share. The wife, a former shop operator, had also sought orders to compel Kingori to disclose all properties held in his name to enable equitable sharing between the two.
The properties being claimed included Sh3.3 million matrimonial home, which sits on a Sh1.2 million prime plot in Nyeri town, three undeveloped plots also in the town and a vehicle worth Sh700,000.
Others were Sh7 million held in an Equity Investment Trust Account at the Old Mutual Bank and other savings in a Barclays Bank account.
But Justice Sergon dismissed all her claims and ruled that her time contribution was only worth 20 per cent of the matrimonial home.
"The parties are to buy out either party or in the alternative the house to be sold and proceeds shared in the ratio of 80:20," ruled Justice Sergon.
Although the estranged wife was holding onto the family car, the judge further threw out her claim on it saying he was not shown how she had contributed to its purchase or ownership. She also lost out her claim on the other properties with the judge saying she failed to prove any direct financial contribution to the purchase and development of the property. On the other hand, the judge said the husband tendered credible evidence showing he consistently wired money to his wife, which was later used to purchase and develop the properties in question.
The two married on January 10, 2006 in a Registrar of Marriages ceremony and have a child. But three years later, they started feuding and accusing each other of contributing to the breakdown of the marriage through infidelity.
But even after the orders on Monday, Kingori made a report at the Nyeri Police Station accusing Abubakar of hiring goons to prevent him from taking possession of the matrimonial home and the car.