The High Court in Nyeri has dismissed a request by a British citizen to order his estranged Kenyan wife and three others to return his share of Sh8.2 million that he allegedly paid them towards joint acquisition of a land parcel in Nanyuki ten years ago.
Mr Simon Wallington Horner wanted the court to award him the sum without going to the full hearing of the dispute.
He wanted the court to order the alleged ex-partners in the land investment deal Mr Roger Clarence Seymour Hurt, Hillary Joanne Dalphine Hurt, Sasha Elizabeth Horner, Janet Elizabeth Hurt, Goodison Ninety Nine Ltd to return the amount plus interest on the sum at the rate of 16 percent per annum from December 2, 2011, until payment in full. Sasha is his estranged wife.
He sought the court orders on grounds that the defendants had in their defence acknowledged liability and admitted owing him the amount.
But Justice Florence Muchemi dismissed the request and said Mr Horner had not provided any document containing an express admission of the amount claimed by him in his court papers.
In addition, the pleadings by both sides had disclosed there were contentious issues that ought to be resolved at the trial of the case.
For instance, the judge said there was a contest on the citizenship of Mr Horner and his capacity to own land in Kenya, existence or nonexistence of the purchase agreement and whether Mr Horner paid the money as a gift during the subsistence of his marriage to Sasha.
"It is apparent from the respondents' defences that they deny the claim and further Sasha has raised issues pertaining to the sum being a gift during the subsistence of their marriage," said Justice Muchemi.
The judge added that Mr Horner's statements that he remitted the said sum to the respondents but a sale agreement was not forthcoming are issues that ought to be ventilated at the trial of the matter.
"The statements of defence of all the respondents reveal that they do not consist of mere denials as alleged but raise triable issues which require proof during hearing. The issues raised by the defendants are to the effect that they deny the debt altogether," said Justice Muchemi.
In the suit, Mr Horner stated sometime in April 2011, he and the individuals entered into an agreement with Machamuka Farmers Company Limited for the purchase of a parcel of land in Nanyuki at a sum of Sh36 million.