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john keen family tussle

Intrigues behind the John Keen property tussle

Intricate details have emerged on a protracted battle by the John Keen family for the control of his estate 7 years after he was laid to rest. Before his death that occurred on the 25th December, 2016, Mr. Keen had written a Will and appointed Rosemary Sanau and Pamela Soila as the executors of the Will. The Will is dated 2nd December, 2015.

The executors thereafter petitioned the Court on 1st February 2017 for the Grant of Probate of the written Will. A Grant of Probate is a legal document which confirms that the executors of the Will have the authority to deal with the assets of the deceased. However before the Court confirmed the Grant of Probate and allowed the executors of the Will to deal with the Estate of deceased, the two aforementioned Executors are accused in Court documents of intermeddling with the Estate and subsequently selling massive land in Kilifi and Karen worth billions of shillings.

Court documents in our possession reveal that the children of Gladwell Wairimu Keen – who are beneficiaries of the said Will – are accusing their step mother – Rosemary Sanau Keen and her daughter Pamela Soila Keen – for selling and transferring land to third parties and Limited Liability Companies without their consent.

The two have accused their step mother of irregularly transferring 12 prime properties in Karen belonging to the first wife of John Keen to a company called Resson Gardens Limited. These properties included her matrimonial home in Karen where Gladwell Wairimu Keen lived since 1974. The court documents also highlight an irregular sub-division and transfer of 37 plots of Gladwell Wairimu Keen’s farm in Kilifi valued at Ksh270 million to a company called The Coast Development Company Limited. The company is not a beneficiary in the Estate.

Rosemary Sanau Keen and her daughter Pamela Soila Keen have also been accused of selling 4 properties in Karen that belonged to Gladwell Wairimu Keen at a total value of Kshs78,250,000 to persons identified as Leonard Mukuria Kimani, Jane Wangari Kamita, Andrew Anthony Mathenge and Janet Mathenge. The Court documents also highlight the loss of Gladwell Wairimu Keen’s 125 acre Kajiado farm, the loss of Gladwell Wairimu Keen’s plot in Namanga town leased to Equity Bank Limited and also the loss of Gladwell Wairimu Keen’s Kajiado title for a farm identified as Plot Number Kajiado/Namanga -1692/80.

Gladwell’s children are accusing Rosemary Sanau Keen and her daughter Pamela Soila Keen of transferring and selling a total of 43 prime properties in land before the Court granted them approval. The John Keen property tussle has resulted in a loss of Ksh1.4 Billion to the Estate. Only 16 property titles of the multibillion fortune at stake are left in the name of the late politician John Keen.

The children of Gladwell Wairimu Keen insist that the transfer and sale of the properties is offensive and was carried out against the law that mandates Executors of an Estate to seek for Court approval before disposing off immovable properties.

They now want the Court to order the cancellation of all those irregularly issued titles. They argue that the move by the accused was aimed at leaving the first wife and her children destitute. John Keen served as an assistant minister for agriculture and the member of Parliament for Kajiado North Constituency from 1969 to 1979.