On Wednesday last week, former lawmaker Ndungu Gethenji was dramatically arrested by DCI officers and hauled in front of a Nairobi court and charged with causing a disturbance.
It is a culmination of a property row involving his family’s premier estate Kihingo village. The property, based in Kitisuru, is home to a who-is-who and counts Kirinyaga Governor Anne Waiganjo as one of the tenants.
Built on a 37-acre piece of land, and owned by the legislator’s late father on a former coffee estate, the premium suburb was modelled on American and European gated communities.
The former MP is the largest shareholder and chairman of the suburb where the cheapest house goes for upwards of Sh180 million and Sh320 million for the highest, according to a report by The Standard.
Mr Gethenji has been accused of stopping renovations that were being carried out by a homeowner, a Mr Kisorkumar Dhanji Varsani, and having one of his employees assault his lawyer, Prof George Wajackoyah.
Mr Gethenji, however, has denied the accusation and said that the cause of his trouble is a plot by a section of Kenyan Asians who own 95% of the homes to take over management due to their large numbers.
The shareholding structure is as follows; there are 115 shares with 55 given to the homeowners and 60 shares reserved for the management company of the estate. This gives Mr Gethenji a 53% ownership stake of the property and the homeowners 47%.
Therefore, Mr Gethenji enjoys sweeping powers with which he can appoint and remove up to two-thirds of company directors.
He claims that the Asians are engaged in a proxy war with him by funding his brother to fight him in court. He says it is clear there was foul play due to the nature of his arrest which was conducted by 30 armed flying squad officers in 15 cars.
Mr Gethenji alleges that there was corruption on his board with two of his directors reportedly involved in fraudulently advising the management of a Sh28 million tax liability.
He also accused the two of fraudulently trying to acquire treasury bonds with Sh9.5 million without the sanction of the board when the management was clearly a non-profit making company.
Mr Gethenji says he built the village single-handedly after his flower business collapsed. He says it took him 10 years to come up with the masterplan and two more years to acquire financing from banks.
He also says that since the land was his father’s, he gave his mother and two brothers high-value six-bedroom houses.
Mr Gethenji was also the chairman of Defence and Foreign Relations Committee in Parliament.