William Mutilangi
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Fight over dead Pepsi millionaire's fortune intensifies as Tanzanian 'heir' takes over house

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A four-bedroom house built by the late former Pepsi Cola director William Mutilangi (inset) at the family compound in Masii, Machakos County. A man has used documents showing he shares a surname with the late millionaire to take over his Greenpark Estate house.

Photo credit: | Nation Media Group

Bakari Kisalu Malanda, the Tanzanian national claiming to be a son of William Mulwa Mutilangi, has moved into the house of the late Kenyan Pepsi executive even as the succession battle over his multi-million shilling estate rages on.

Mr Malanda used documents indicating that he shares a surname with the former Pepsi Cola director to gain access to the house is located in Greenpark Estate, Athi River, within the larger Nairobi metropolitan area. 

Mutilangi’s siblings have denied knowledge of Mr Malanda as their late brother’s son, and have claimed the death and subsequent cremation of the Pepsi executive who worked and lived in New York is suspect.    

Mr Malanda presented the documents to Gems Management Ltd, the firm that manages Greenpark Estate, and claimed to be Mr Mulwa’s son and heir.

A Gems Management Ltd official said on Monday that the firm granted Mr Malanda access to the house on the strength of the documents and the fact that nobody came out to contest the Tanzanian’s occupancy.

The Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) is investigating Mr Malanda’s claim to Mr Mulwa’s property after another Nairobi-based real estate management company notified them of conflicting claims to his possessions.

Web of mystery over William Mulwa Mutilangi death and assets.

Photo credit: Nation Media Group

The Gems Management Ltd official, who identified himself as Edgar, did not specify the nature of the documents and in particular whether a birth certificate was part of the papers presented to them.

“He brought us documents from a lawyer and when we saw that he shares a surname with the house owner and that nobody else had come claiming to be a relative, we did not block him from accessing the house… We have never seen any relative of Mr Mulwa here, and he did not list next of kin with us,” Edgar said before asking us to visit the office on Tuesday.

When the Nation visited the Gems Management office within Greenpark Estate on Tuesday, Mr Edgar declined to comment, citing client confidentiality.

Mr Edgar said that Mr Mulwa did not indicate a next of kin contact with Gems Management Ltd, and that nobody from the firm has ever set eyes on the former Pepsi director’s relatives.

He also declined to show us copies of the documents presented by Mr Malanda. Edgar added that if someone else had visited the Gems Management office claiming to be Mr Mulwa’s relative, and challenged Mr Malanda’s occupancy of the house, then an inquiry would have been opened.

The official said that there is a functioning ‘Nyumba Kumi’ initiative at Greenpark, which hears such disputes.

But Edward Mutilangi, a brother of Mr Mulwa, said he had visited Gems Management’s office to notify them of the family’s claim to their brother’s property.

The younger Mutilangi said that the estate management firm denied having copies of the documents Mr Malanda used to convince its officials to grant access to the house.

On Thursday, Edgar said that any queries on Mr Mulwa and his assets at Greenpark estate should be directed to Gems Management Ltd’s lawyers.

Mutilangi siblings

From left: Mutilangi siblings Edward, Vincent and William during their mother's funeral on November 3, 2013. William died in the US on October 16, 2023. A Tanzanian man claiming to be his son has sought control over William's assets in Kenya and the US.  Family archives

Photo credit: Pool

Mr Mulwa died in New York on October 16, 2023. After his death, Mr Malanda claimed to be his son.

He then swiftly issued a power of attorney – a legal authorisation allowing a designated individual to make decisions on behalf of the executor – in favour of New Jersey-based Peter Nderitu Githinji, specifically to order for Mr Mulwa’s cremation.

The cremation was done before an autopsy was done on his remains. Mr Malanda has now made a move on some of Mr Mulwa’s assets in Kenya, which are also contested by the family.

The late executive had three houses at the upmarket Greenpark Estate, two in Imara Daima, one each in South C, Chania Gardens, Masii and New York.

Mr Malanda has since late last year been going to the Greenpark Estate house in the morning, and leaving at sunset, sources at the gated community told our team.

In December, DCI officers called Mr Malanda and asked him to go record a statement, but he apparently switched off his phone before travelling to Tanzania.

The Nation has established that Mr Malanda returned to Kenya last week, and has been at the Greenpark house.

On Monday, nobody opened the door after we rang the bell several times. There was some movement inside the house, but the door and all windows remained shut.

When we called him seeking to meet outside the Greenpark house, Mr Malanda said he had briefly left but would call us once back.

He called back a few minutes later and asked if we were the journalists that had authored a story on William’s death and the conflicting kinship claims.

When we answered in the affirmative, he directed us to lawyer Jimmy Kahuthu for any questions regarding Mr Mulwa.

Mr Kahuthu is Mr Malanda’s lawyer. The lawyer claims to have a will written by Mr Mulwa, which bequeaths a multimillion-shilling estate to Mr Malanda at the expense of the former Pepsi Cola director’s siblings.

Mr Githinji, the New Jersey-based man who ordered for Dr Mutilangi’s cremation on behalf of Mr Bakari, also directed us to Mr Kahuthu for comment on matters involving the former Pepsi director.

Mr Kahuthu did not answer or return our calls on Thursday.