Riky Rick’s live-in lover, Bianca Jade Naidoo, has dragged the Joburg Master of the High Court and Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi to court in a bid to force them to recognise her as the late artist’s wife and executrix (female executor of an estate) of his lucrative estate.
Riky Rick, who died by suicide at his Waterfall studio in February, died intestate, meaning he did not have a will at the time of his untimely death.
Before his death, the hip-hop mega star had secured endorsements from Vaseline, Kiwi, African Bank and Russian Bear. He reportedly owned a Ferrari and a Mercedes-Benz AMG GTS coupé, among his fleet of vehicles.
He founded Cotton Club Records, owned a barber shop in the Legends Barber franchise and was the architect of the celebrity event called Cotton Fest, a celebration of South African youth culture that was attended by celebrities.
Several blockbuster albums also generated millions of rand in royalties.
If appointed the executrix, Naidoo will work with lawyers to wind up his estate and become its beneficiary.
In the court papers, which we have seen, Naidoo said she and the artist were, at the time of his death, “partners in a permanent opposite-sex life partnership, with the same or similar characteristics as a marriage after hitting it off on 26 May 2013”.
“At the time of my acceptance of a relationship with the deceased I lived with my first daughter, who was born out of a previous failed marriage. I expressed to the deceased that unless he was committed to him and myself having a stable relationship with a future, I would not permit him to meet my daughter. The deceased expressed that he wanted a long-lasting future with me, and we began living together with my daughter as a family during the same year of 2013 at my residential property bought for me by my parents in Bryanston, Gauteng,” read the papers.
She said they cohabited between 2013 and 2022 in a “conjugal relationship in which we supported and maintained each other assuming reciprocal commitments and creating a duty to support each other”. This until she gave birth to their son on March 19.
She said when she met the artist he was unemployed, had no source of income and was pursuing his career in music. She said she was the breadwinner of their family and supported him financially, including with groceries and petrol money. “The deceased also used my vehicle and this included me paying for petrol as well as money he had to pay for studio time recording his music. My financial support for the deceased continued until his career endeavours eventually became a success during the year 2014.”
She said in 2014, Riky Rick moved out of her residential property to various other residential areas until they eventually settled in Waterfall Country Village Estate in Midrand last year.
She said when they moved to the estate, she had already quit her paying job, at the behest of the artist, and worked with him to grow his music career.
“The deceased and I thus established a financial interdependence because I performed all the administrative tasks related to the decease’s duties as entertainer/musician until his untimely death.
“The deceased and I enjoyed emotional and financial inter-dependence by also inter alia registering and running successful commercial businesses together, which include the Legends Barber as well as Cotton Fest. Both I and the deceased were directors of Makhado Agency (Pty) Ltd, which we operated together in all respects. The deceased and I also enjoyed the benefits as life partners as members of my medical aid scheme who regarded us as life partners,” read the papers.
Naidoo said Riky Rick introduced her to his family in May 2013 and she introduced him to hers in June 2013. “Our families … soon accepted our relationship as that of a ‘married couple’. The deceased and my mother shared a close relationship of a ‘mother and son- in-law’,” read the papers.
She said Riky Rick had gifted her a “promise ring” in 2015 and bought another on Valentine’s Day in 2020 to reaffirm his lifetime commitment to her.
She said he also referred to her as his “wife” in the presence of their families and friends as well as in public and on social media platforms.
“Our common intention together with the deceased was to validate our marriage in accordance with civil law. As already stated above, although our families with the deceased are not traditional, they did meet during the course of our relationship to have marriage discussions and our families did approve of our relationship as that of husband and wife.”
She said their families dispensed with the traditional lobola celebrations because of their modern way of life.
“Furthermore, as already stated above, the deceased and I did intend to eventually marry, however, the deceased unfortunately passed before the solemnisation of our marriage became a reality, albeit we lived our joint lives as a married couple. I have therefore been advised that I do qualify within the category of a partner ‘in a permanent life partnership in which the partners have undertaken reciprocal duties of support’,” read the papers.
Naidoo further said she deserved to be appointed as the executrix because she was the only legal guardian of their children.
She said Riky Rick’s family were her in-laws and supported her appointment as the executrix and beneficiary.
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