Relief for Kenyans as Gov’t suspends all demolitions

The Grand Manor Hotel in Gigiri that was demolished for posing a security risk to ...
The Grand Manor Hotel in Gigiri that was demolished for posing a security risk to the UN offices in Nairobi.

The Government has suspended all demolitions that were to take place across the country.

A statement from the Head of Public Service Joseph Kinyua said a decision to stop the removal of illegal structures was arrived at after talks with State agencies and other stakeholders.

“It is notified for the General Information of the Public that the Government has forthwith directed the immediate suspension of all demolition of properties in all parts of the Country until further notice,” it reads.

The notice came just hours after Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko had announced that all demolitions in the county should stop with immediate effect.

Governor Sonko in his statement said he had held talks with President Uhuru Kenyatta who is away.

There was hue and cry two days ago when the Government began demolitions of buildings on riparian land and those said to have been built without proper approvals.

The most recent demolition was that of the multi-million shilling Grand Manor Hotel in Gigiri.

A court ruled that the hotel owned by businessman Praful Kumar posed a security threat to the United Nations offices neighbouring it.

Other buildings that have been brought down in Nairobi include Java House and Shell Petrol Station in Kileleshwa, Ukay Mall, Airgate Centre (Taj Mall), South End Mall and a section of Visa Oshwal Centre.

The controversy surrounding Seefar Apartments on Mbagathi Road saw MPs call for destruction of the nearby dam to save the residential buildings.

The matter is yet to be settled even as the Water Resources Management Authority (WARMA) and the National Environmental Management Authority (NEMA) insist on its demolition.

According to them, the property was built on riparian land: Nairobi Dam and Ngong River, contrary to the law.

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