Equity deal on Fourways Estate takeover to stay
Tuesday May 16 2023
The Court of Appeal has declined to suspend a deal struck between Equity Bank and administrators of a former Kiambu tycoon over the takeover of Fourways Junction Estate, off Kiambu Road.
Nancy Wanja Gatabaki and Josephine Beatrice Gathoni, who are administrators of the estate of Samuel Gatabaki wanted the court to set aside a consent entered in November 2021, claiming that there was collusion and fraud in the process.
Part of the consent allowed them to purchase 19 houses at below-market prices and the family was to withdraw all claims against the bank.
Read: Setback for Gatabakis in real estate dispute
The administrators, however, claimed that part of the property taken over by the lender comprises matrimonial and ancestral land where Dr Gatabaki is buried and that, if the suit property is sold to recover a loan, they will be rendered homeless.
“Accordingly, the applicants have not satisfied us that the intended appeal will be rendered nugatory should it succeed,” Justices Kathurima M’Inoti, Imaana Laibuta and Hellen Omondi ruled.
The family is contesting the consent, arguing that it was the product of collusion between their advocates on record and those of the bank.
Equity Bank opposed the application, contending that the consent order was a binding agreement between the parties to it, and could not be set aside arbitrarily.
The lender submitted that the administrators wanted to benefit from some parts of the consent order while rejecting others.
Further, the bank said correspondence exchanged between the parties before the adoption of the consent order showed that the administrators performed parts of the consent order that were beneficial to them, such as purchasing 19 units on the suit properties below market price.
Read: Customer sues Equity Bank for data breach dispute
Ms Gatabaki and her daughter claimed that they are the beneficial owners of two parcels measuring about 200 acres and about 6.53 acres respectively in Nairobi.
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