24.6 C
Thursday, May 30, 2024
HomeWealthThe Kenyan Billionaires Who Went Bankrupt

The Kenyan Billionaires Who Went Bankrupt

In Kenya, being declared bankrupt simply means that one is unable to pay his/her debts and the matter is arrived at after considerations by a court. Either the debtor or the creditor can file for bankruptcy and with sufficient evidence, the court may adjudge one to be such.

An official receiver or trustee may then be appointed to take over the debtor’s assets in order to offset the liabilities.

In Kenya, various popular people have been declared bankrupt, with some picking themselves up while for others it became part of their genesis to a dwindling financial situation. WOK lists some of the figures who fell on the bankruptcy tag.

Cyrus Jirongo 

Cyrus Jirongo has been a prominent figure in courts due to property deals. [Photo|Courtesy]
The former Lugari Member of Parliament (MP) has been a prominent figure in various courts due to multi-billion property deals. In the ’90s, the 62 year old was a man of means with an estimated net worth running into billions.

Read Also: Cyrus Jirongo Biography, Age, Education,Family & Political Career

However, in 2017, judge Olga Sewe declared Jirongo bankrupt after he failed to pay Ksh 700 million that he owed 8 companies. The politician used assets of the said firms to acquire a loan from National Bank of Kenya, but failed to pay the amount. Consequently, the lender auctioned the companies’ assets in 2009.

In 2014, the proprietor of the companies, Sammy Boit Kogo obtained a court order to have Jirongo pay the Ksh 700 million with accrued interests. However, the debt laden businessman failed, prompting Kogo to file for bankruptcy.

Suleiman Shahbal

Billionaire Suleiman Shahbal. [Photo|Courtesy]
The Mombasa Governor is an established billionaire with interests in finance and energy. He is associated with Gulf Energy which was acquired by Rubis and Gulf African Bank.

In the ’90s, Shahbal resigned from a high ranking position at Citi Bank in order to establish his own venture, an oil marketing firm. However, four years later, the serial entrepreneur had nothing to show of it and was declared bankrupt.

Read Also: Suleiman Shahbal Biography: Declared Bankrupt Twice But Now Worth Billions

According to Shahbal, he has been declared bankrupt twice but this has enabled him to be a risk taker.

I am a risk taker, having gone bankrupt twice before bouncing back, I have learned to manage risks through my experience,” he told The Star.

Peter Nduati


The entrepreneur, in his 50s, is known for his flamboyance and multi-faceted entrepreneurial ventures. He has invested widely in various sectors ranging from insurance, music and sports. He is the founder of Resolution Insurance, an underwriter reportedly to be struggling to keep afloat.

Nduati made his first million aged only 24, but all that faded by the time he was 30. According to Nation.Africa, Nduati has been at the brink of bankruptcy on multiple times and has had his property auctioned twice.

4). David Murathe 

David Murathe. [Photo|Courtesy]
The Jubilee party Vice Chairman is known as a powerful gatekeeper and close confidant to President Uhuru Kenyatta.

He is credited with successfully predicting the painful Uhuruto fallout that has seen Uhuru backing former premier Raila Odinga in the upcoming August polls.

Murathe is said to be involved in brokerage deals in multi-billion government projects. However, in 2005 he filed for temporary bankruptcy after he failed to pay a ksh 50 million debt.