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Helen Prest panics as Dr Tosin Ajayi’s Ikoyi house rent expires a year after his death

Former beauty queen Helen Prest-Ajayi via her Instagram page has marked the one year anniversary of the death of her partner Tosin Ajayi, the founder and medical director of First Foundation Medical Centre, Lagos, who died on Monday April 27, 2020, at St. Nicholas Hospital, Lagos Island.

He was 75 years old.

“Yes it”s one year already! Unbelievable??? As I write, all the hackneyed expressions come to mind. “Death is a great leveller”, “concrete overcoat”, It”s like yesterday”, “time waits for no-one”, “how time flies”… We are told these words have been spoiled by over familiarity and are enjoined not to use them. But in poignant moments we reach out for the familiar to express our deepest emotions and find comfort. They are like my husband’s travelling jumper folded in his travel bag, or his slippers still leaning against the wall. They express thoughts and evoke memories that are universally understood at a much deeper level than we imagine.

We hear them all the time and probably don’t give them a seconds thought, just like old jumpers and slippers, but it is when these are applied to our lives in times of acute distress that these words truly come to life. No other words will do.
Here we are one year on, as I am tempted to clutch on to another well worn phrase “gone too soon” I remember my daughters telling me ” Mama daddy did everything he wanted to do and lived life the way he wanted.” Heln wrote on Instagram moment ago.

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Kemi Filani recalls that ever since Dr Ajayi died, it has been one drama or other in the Ajayi family.

Ajayi’s funeral was fraught with unsavoury drama that left many friends, family members and well-wishers grappling with shock.

His burial took place after series of court hearings and reconciliatory meetings among the deceased’s first wife, Oluyemisi Ajayi, her five children, and Ajayi’s wife, Helen Prest.

To what might come as a shock to many people, Dr. Ajayi, with all the enormous financial wherewithal at his disposal, lived in a rented apartment during his lifetime.

Indeed, Ajayi was a very wealthy man, and he ran a thriving practice, and had many luxury and landed properties, scattered around the world. He was also a respected businessman with interests in many lucrative pies such as telecommunications (he once held the franchise of Siemens in Nigeria) and real estate among others.

But, Ajayi lived in a rented apartment in Ikoyi. The rent is reportedly estimated at N30 million per annum. When he was alive, that would have been chicken feed to him.

But now that he is no more, the tide has changed, and his widow, Helen Prest is said to be unnerved by the growing concerns that stark reality portends, Kemi Ashefon reports.

Sources disclosed that Helen Prest is greatly disturbed by the battles being waged against her by the Ajayi children. But more disturbing for her is the catalogue of challenges she is facing in raising the funds to renew the rent.

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A source close to Helen Prest said the rent issue has been giving her sleepless nights. She is now torn between working harder or moving into a smaller and more affordable apartment. She is also concerned about how to raise her three daughters – Tiffany and Tosan Davies (from her previous marriage to Jimmy Davies), and Tomisin Ajayi, and maintain the “fairy princess” lifestyles that Ajayi treated them to.

Helen Prest, 61, a lawyer and a former beauty queen, was said to have met Ajayi twenty-five years ago, ten years after he had been separated from his first wife, Oluyemisi.

Ajayi and his wife, Oluyemisi, a retired Chief Nursing Officer with the Lagos State Government, were legally married, even though they were estranged as of the time of his death.

Helen Prest, a graduate of law from the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, also holds an LL.M from the Kings College, London. She got married to Dr. Ajayi after her first marriage to Jimmy Davies, a businessman, collapsed. Theirs was a whirlwind union that stood the test of time. Sadly, Ajayi’s death has now eclipsed the fairytale lifestyle that Helen Prest had been used to, virtually all her life.

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