The court on Friday, October 8, delivered a ruling in favour of the family of Ntimama in a legal battle with his son-in-law.
In court documents, Mr Kimani who was husband to Ntimama’s last born daughter Vivian, claimed a stake in the Ksh100 million as the administrator of her estate after she passed on in January 2020.
According to Ntimama’s will dated June 24, 2015, property bequeathed to his wife was to be inherited by his last-born daughter Vivian.
Ntimama had also instructed Vivian to make provision for the upkeep, comfort and maintenance of his wife Mama Dorcas and to generally take care of her in the course of her life.
The rest of Ntimama’s children were appointed as their motherâ€™s legal guardians and managers of her affairs after she was diagnosed with dementia and memory loss.
The siblings opposed their brother-in-lawâ€™s claim to the account, arguing that their sister was a signatory for the purposes of taking care of their mother Dorcas.
But Justice Tuiyott faulted Kimani for claiming the funds were jointly owned by his mother-in-law Pedelai Ntimama and Vivian.
Further, the Judge noted that there was no evidence that the mother and daughter had an agreement in this regard.
The ruling also stated that although Ole Ntimamaâ€™s will indicated everything he had bequeathed his wife Dorcas was to pass on to Vivian, it did indicate if the funds in the will does not demonstrate the monies were to revert to Vivian.
â€œEvidence that emerged is that although Mama Dorcas invited Vivian as a co-signatory and second subscriber to the account, the funds in the account belonged solely to Mama Dorcas,â€ Justice Tuiyott stated.
The judge ruled that the law presumes that, unless expressly stated to the contrary, full ownership of a joint bank account passes to the surviving joint owner upon the demise of a co-owner.