Bungoma, Vihiga, Busia, and Kakamega counties make up Western Kenya. As of the 2019 census, the total population of the aforementioned counties is about 5,021,843.
Kakamega, the region’s wealthiest county, contributes 2.4% to the national GDP while Vihiga, the region’s poorest county, contributes only 0.8%.
As reported by several online media outlets, here is a list of the top ten wealthiest people in Western Kenya and the businesses they own:
In an effort to save the government from financial ruin, Western Kenyan millionaire Ibrahim Ambwere promised to pay the Ksh 48 million in back teachers’ salary (equivalent to Ksh 4 billion today).
He owns a number of residential and commercial properties, including the Ambwere Furaha, Ambwere Plaza, Ambwere Complex, and Ambwere Towers, and operates as a landlord.
The 86-year-old does not talk about his fortune, but locals claim he is worth billions of dollars.
One of the wealthiest people in Western Kenya, Julius Mwale has stayed under the radar at home while creating waves abroad.
He attended school and was born in the county of Kakamega in Kenya in 1976. Following his move to the United States of America, the businessman enlisted in the Kenya Air Force. A number of obstacles stood in his way when he first arrived in the United States, but he eventually overcame them.
He picked up the pieces and, next to the Empire State Building in New York, opened a Biometric technology company, spending a total of $2 million (Sh200 million).
By 2003, his firm had grown to employ 60 individuals, and it was working with major financial institutions including the Bank of New York and JP Morgan Chase. He is responsible for the Sh200 billion (about $2 billion) Mwale Medical and Technology City in Butere.
He makes his home in New York, where his neighbors include George Soros, Donald Trump, and Bill Gates. He has a ranch in the United States and raises 19 horses, each of which is valued about Ksh1.5 million. The former US president Donald Trump and the artist Akon are just two of the many famous individuals Julius Mwale has met.
The Sec-Gen of the COTU is a very affluent man who likes to show it off. His collection of high-end automobiles, which includes a Mercedes-Benz S300 and a Mercedes-Maybach 6 Cabriolet, is said to be worth millions of Kenyan shillings. He also likes to dress himself with high-end fashion and accessories.
His mansion in Kumpa, Kajiado, features a helipad, a restaurant that can seat 300 people, a guesthouse, and space for 100 cars.
He pulls in tens of thousands of shillings every month from COTU and even more from the various boards he sits on. Francis Atwoli said in an interview that he had loaned Cyrus Jirongo Ksh 110 million on a “soft” basis and that Jirongo had never paid it back.
Besides being a successful businessman and politician, Eugene Wamalwa is one of the wealthiest people in Western Kenya. The board found out about his Ksh 400 million fortune when he was appointed Cabinet Secretary.
Aden Duale questioned why he sought the job when he was already worth that much money, but he responded that he was not motivated by financial gain but rather by the desire to serve the Kenyan people.
Eugene Wamalwa is the wealthy owner of multiple homes, acres of property, and a successful law practice. He also mentioned that in 2001, his firm had represented Yoweri Museveni, the current president of Uganda.
Phillip A. Kisa Arunga
Since its founding in September 1985, Philip Arunga O. Kisa has served as the Managing Director of Urgent Cargo Handling LTD.
The logistics firm’s headquarters are in Nairobi, and it has satellite offices in Namanga, Nakuru, Eldoret, Kisumu, Malaba Busia, and on the Kenyan side of the Ugandan border, as well as in Mombasa and at the JKIA. The multi-award winning firm provides logistics solutions including storage, brokerage, ocean and air freight, transportation, and a cargo terminal.
He is an accomplished polo player who takes much pleasure in his hobby. Instead of raising his own ponies, he imports them. He recalls, “About 12 years ago, at Rolf’s Place in Kitengela, I was invited for a game of polo by a buddy, and I got intrigued.”
After three months of lessons with the late Rolf, he was able to ride well enough to play polo. Arungah has utilized his collection of twelve equines to introduce his adolescent son, Omwakwe, to the sport of polo.
He then goes on to explain, “Expensive is relative,” in response to the common perception that the sport is too costly for the average person to enjoy. Despite popular belief, I don’t think it’s that pricey. This has been the primary issue in the nation.
It has a reputation for being a sport just for wealthy white men. Just don’t see it happening. It’s my opinion that many people in Kenya have the financial means to participate in and develop their skills in the sport.
Former vice president and ANC party leader Hon. Musalia Mudavadi is also one of Western Kenya’s wealthiest individuals.
Unfortunately for him, most Kenyans only know him from his political career. He owns both a bank and an insurance firm.
Also in Westlands, Mudavadi has a commercial office building and residential units. Mudavadi attended college for Land Economics, and he eventually established a property management firm in Westlands.
It’s been speculated that Moses Wetangula has a fortune of Ksh 2.4 billion. He’s also an entrepreneur in addition to being a politician.
He has multiple properties in the Syokimau area and along Ngong Road. A portion of his original investment in the law firm of Wetangula, Adan, Makokha & Company Advocates has not yet been distributed to him.
Unc Moody Awori is one of the wealthiest Kenyans in the Western area. He has written a biography titled “Riding on a Tiger” and serves as Kenya’s ninth vice president.
After being included to the list of former State executives receiving generous retirement benefits, the government provided Ksh 149.2 million in 2018 to pay for his office and staff.
He was provided with a saloon car and an SUV, both of which were assigned drivers and were scheduled for replacement every four years. According to the Salaries and Remuneration Commission, his total compensation in 2013 was Sh1.93 million.