4 June 2018

Kenya: Sonko Says Demolition of Sub-Standard Buildings to Continue

Nairobi — Nairobi Governors Mike Sonko says the demolition of all earmarked buildings that are in danger of collapsing must continue.

In a statement, the Nairobi Governor stated that "Nairobi is an Economic Commercial Hub for Africa, therefore all its buildings must meet the International required construction standards."

He said that the County Government will not allow people to put up structures that endanger the lives of citizens.

He explained that all county staff frustrating the process of demolition of these buildings will be held to account.

Three people died after a building in Huruma collapsed with an unknown number of people still unaccounted for.

The five-storey building that collapsed on Sunday morning resulting in three deaths had been marked for demolition.

The building is among 711 structures earmarked for demolition which was set to commence in March 2017 but later suspended and moved to January 2018 under unclear circumstances.

According to an audit conducted by the Buildings Inspectorate at the Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development in 2017, 388 houses were flagged as very dangerous while 323 were reported to be unsafe.

Majority of the condemned houses were said to have been built on riparian areas with the structural integrity of all of the inspected houses put to question.

A number of buildings have collapsed in Huruma's recent history with the most devastating being in April 2016 when more than forty people lost their lives.

National Disaster Management Unit (NDMU), Deputy Director Pius Masai told the press on Sunday that four people had been rescued alive as a multi-agency operation to find those trapped in debris continued.

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