Mombasa tycoon's kin in property dispute

Businessman Shahid Bhutt in a Mombasa court. KEVIN ODIT | NATION

The family of slain Mombasa tycoon Shahid Pervez Bhutt, who owned Modern Coast Express, is still battling for control of his Sh5 billion estate five years after his death.

The bus company was founded in 2007, with operations in Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania.

The late businessman owned over 200 motor vehicles, mostly luxury buses under his bus company, which is still operational. According to court documents, Mr Bhutt had before his death concluded the acquisition of another 29 motor vehicles.

Bhutt’s business empire was partly set up in tax havens, including the island of Jersey.

An astute and hard-working businessman who managed his business empire with a keen eye and steady hand, the tycoon was gunned down on July 11, 2014 in Changamwe, Mombasa. A month before his death, Mr Bhutt had appeared in court for the hearing of a terror-related case around funding and radicalisation of Muslim youths in Mombasa. He had been charged in 2013 with   incitement to violence and funding terrorism activities.


Two months after his death, one of his two widows, Regine Bhutt, filed a succession case at the High Court in Mombasa, in which she named the deceased’s son, Haroon Bhutt and his mother Akhtar Bhutt, the tycoon’s first wife, as interested parties.

The assets listed in the petition by the widow include shares in the family businesses Modern Coast Express, Vantage Road Transporters, Blue Bell Properties and several parcels of land.

In a suit filed in 2014, Regine argues that she and her two children are legal dependants and beneficiaries of the deceased’s estate and are thus entitled to the grant of letters of administration.

“The petitioners are in the process of petitioning for letters of administration intestate in their joint names,” reads part of the petition.

Bhutt's widow Regine. LABAN WALLOGA | NATION

According to the suit, Regine is seeking an order to be issued to financial institutions to furnish her with statements of accounts of the deceased for purposes of taking an inventory of his assets.

She also wants to be paid Sh1.5 million monthly from bank accounts, incomes and profits of Modern Coast Express Limited and Vantage Road Transporters Limited for upkeep and maintenance.

According to the suit, Regine, who filed the succession case together with her mother on behalf of her two children, is seeking to be paid Sh1.05 million each year from the two companies to pay her children’s school fees.

The petitioners are also seeking an order prohibiting Haroon and his mother Akhtar from drawing money from various accounts and selling, transferring, disposing of, leasing and dealing in several plots.


Regine and her mother had said they would administer all the estates of the deceased, which by law are managed by his personal representatives for use and benefit of his dependants.

The two widows and the son of the slain Mombasa tycoon were appointed as interim administrators of the estate of the deceased.

A three-judge bench comprising Justices Eric Ogola, Njoki Mwangi and Patrick Otieno directed the parties to file their affidavits and written submissions within 30 days.

It is the second bench to be constituted to hear the succession dispute.

Bhutt's widow Akhtar. LABAN WALLOGA | NATION