Why Njenga Karume Trustees Cannot use the right of appeal

Trustee chairman of the late Njenga Karume Estate George Ngugi (left) spokesman Stephen Karau (centre) and Geoffrey Njenga, a mediator during a past briefing

On Thursday May 7, 2020 a judgement by Hon Lady Justice Roselyn Ekirapa Aburili delivered a blow to the trustees of The Njenga Karume Trust and the Njenga Karume Trust Registered Trustees.

In 2019 Mahakamani news had convened a detailed report on the court proceedings in the Civil Case 125 of 2015. In the blog post, the news site highlighted on how the court evidence had linked the trustees with the misfortunes surrounding Njenga Karume’s family including the sale of the prestigious Jacaranda Hotel. The blogpost also highlighted about the possible massive fraud and dishonesty on the trustees part. Reportedly, Mr Charles Kimani, the Chairman of Jacaranda Hotel at that time , later on filed a resignation letter.

Fast forward, in the judgment rendered by the High Court at Nairobi, the learned Judge made a declaration that removed Mr. George Ngugi Waireri, Mr Kung’u Gatabaki and Margaret Nduta Kamithi as trustees of the Njenga Karume Trust and the Njenga Karume Trust Registered Trustees. The reasons for their removal are that they flaunted disregarded numerous proviso contained in the Trust Deed.

The goose looks cooked for the trustees as Lady Justice Roselyn Aburili further directed that within the next 180 days, the removed trustees of the Njenga Karume Trust and the Njenga Karume Trust Registered Trustees should be able to give full account and/ or give an account of all transactions undertaken, payments made, and funds received and the expenditures incurred on behalf of the Njenga Karume Trust since February 24, 2012 until the date when the judgment was delivered. The purpose of the direction issued by the court was to determine if there was any dishonesty on the part of the Trustees in dealings with the Trust assets.

The judgement serves a warning if not a precursor to the tough times ahead for both secured or unsecured creditors who had dealt with the Njenga Karume Trust and the Njenga Karume Trust Registered Trustees. If after perusing the accounting books and the court finds dishonesty on part of the trustees , then the trust shall be offered indemnity. This means that the trust will have legal security or protection against losses or other financial burden accrued by the trustees in their dishonest businesses. This also means that the impeding auction of Jacaranda Hotel may be brought to a halt.

Why it is unwise for the Trustees to appeal

If the court finds dishonesty in the trustees for mismanaging the Njenga Karume Trust funds, the removed trustees could risk imprisonment for theft of the trust funds and for negligence that had led to the death of two family members among Njenga Karume’s kindred. (beneficiaries of the trust).

For the takeover process, the Iseme, Kamau & Maema Advocates (IKM) law firm  was directed to supervise the exit process for the removed Trustees. According to proviso of the trust deed document, clause 4.8 the Chairman of the Trust who before the judgment was Mr. George Waireri, cannot be a beneficiary of the Trust.

More to follow>>>>>

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