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Ex-Equity Bank CEO’s widow wants hubby’s remains exhumed

By Joseph Ndunda November 1st, 2019 2 min read

One of the widows of former Equity Bank CEO John Mwangi Kagema wants his body exhumed for DNA test to ascertain the paternity of all claiming to be the deceased tycoon’s children.

Sarah Wanjiru Ngugi says this will settle litigations in the ongoing succession case over his multi-billion estate.

Ms. Ngugi wants Kagema’s body exhumed for DNA test to prove her two children were fathered by the late billionaire.

“That equally DNA test be conducted on any other persons alleging to be a biological child of the deceased so as to avoid unnecessary lengthy litigation so as to determine paternity,” she says in court papers. She wants the high court to give directions on the manner in which to harvest samples for DNA.

Three women and their children are embroiled in a legal tussle over Kagema’s property and have accused each other of making false claims over their marriage to the former CEO.

Ms. Ngugi has accused one of her co-wives Beatrice Wanjiku Mwangi of deliberately failing to disclose the extent of the deceased’s wealth.

She says she knows Kagema’s property and assets because she worked with him to acquire and manage them and the list declared by Ms. Mwangi has left out a substantial portion of the same.

And Ms. Ngugi wants the estate preserved to prevent waste, loss or adverse dealings with by other parties.


Another woman identified as Esther Njeri has also laid claim on Kagema’s property claiming to have been his wife.

But Ms. Mwangi in her replying affidavits, has disputed Njeri’s claims stating that she married Kagema on January 29, 1972 in a monogamous union that could not allow him into another marriage.

Ms. Mwangi says she lived with Kagema in South “B” in Nairobi before moving to Buruburu and later to Upperhill in 2003 where they lived until his demise last year.

On the other hand, Ms. Ngugi claims she married Kagema in 2007 and they were blessed with two children adding she is stranger to Ms. Mwangi’s claims to be Kagema’s wife.

“I aver that I and my children were dependent on the deceased as my husband and father of my children in so far as housing housing, school fees, clothing, medical care livelihood issues were concerned and on behalf, I seek the court to provide the same for us from the deceased’s estate,” she states in an affidavit.


Ms. Ngugi says the DNA should be conducted on all claiming to be children of the late tycoon to settle unnecessary litigations in respect to Kagema.

She says that upon Kagema’s death, Ms. Mwangi for no good reasons kept away from all the preparations of burial and interment of Kagema causing her psychological torture, stress and mental anguish.

She says that the claim by the other woman (Esther Njeri) that is a wife to the deceased cannot be true.

The case will be heard on of November 23.

The late Kagema is a seasoned entrepreneur associated with Enashipai Spa & Resort in Naivasha. He died in December last year.

Ms. Mwangi and her two children James Kagema and Daniel Wamahihu — who are among her four children — filed a succession case at the High Court in Nairobi in February to kick-start the process of being administrators of the estate.