Philippa Seilern was my first cousin (p.6) and I was also her closest living relative.
She died from kidney failure on January 17, 2018, after 2 days in the Lagos (Portugal) hospital. I got a call the next day from Eden Nylen, the family housekeeper in Monte Carlo, who gave me the sad news.
I was surprised and asked why she was calling since I hadn’t seen Philippa in well over 30 years. The answer was even more surprising. Here is a transcript of Eden’s deposition (p.24):
"Miss Philippa called me from Lagos before her hip operation in April 2017 with the following instructions - In case something would happen to her, to call Mr Peter Seilern Senior (PS Sr.) in Switzerland.
I requested his number from Miss Philippa, and she instructed me to find it in the family register. When I looked up his number, I asked her if this is correct, as it was Switzerland, and she confirmed with YES.
I asked her why she is giving me these instructions? Her reply "Just in case something happens to me". Then I asked her "How about I go and tell your cousin (note Boy)?" and Philippa replied, "Do not tell anyone from my Monaco family".
Her Monte Carlo driver Danny Cabellon was next to me at the time and witnessed this phone call."
That Philippa had asked her housekeeper to only get in touch with me, led me to believe that somehow, she may have wanted me to help.
The next day I flew to Lagos and apart from signing some papers at the mortuary, visiting her house and meeting both housekeepers (Monte Carlo and Lagos), there was little to be done.
When I asked Jinny Harman, the English lady who oversaw Philippa's affairs in Lagos, who was the legal owner of the house, I was given a straight answer "I have been instructed not to provide you with that information". Who was giving those orders? Why the secrecy? This was not normal.
Over time, inconsistencies I uncovered indicated that the disposal of Philippa’s estate may not have been handled according to her wishes.