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Owner of Huruma collapsed building arrested

Monday May 2 2016

ELIZABETH MERAB
By ELIZABETH MERAB
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The owner of a building that collapsed on Friday evening killing 19 people has been arrested.

Samuel Kamau, who allegedly also owns four other buildings close to the one that collapsed surrendered to Pangani Police Station Sunday evening and was detained.

His arrest comes a day after President Uhuru Kenyatta and the Cabinet Secretary for Internal Security Joseph Nkaissery ordered for his arrest.

President Uhuru Kenyatta ordered an audit of all the city buildings in January 2015 after a series of such tragedies.

The collapsed building, which housed an unknown number of people had been earmarked for demolition by the county council.

At least 19 people are dead, 65 unaccounted for and 135 have been rescued from the wreckage of the six-storey residential building that collapsed in Huruma's Ngei II flats.

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AUDIT REPORT GATHERING DUST

However, the report continues to gather dust as its recommendations are yet to be implemented by City Hall and National Construction Authority.

The audit carried last year had already identified houses which were not structurally sound.

It covered most parts of Eastlands, Dagoretti, Kasarani, Zimmerman, Roysambu, Githurai 44 and 45, Garden Estate, Thome, and Kilimani.

The audit team chaired by Mr Moses Nyakiongora, recommended among other things, “the evacuation of residents in buildings which have shown structural failures and are classified as dangerous even before structural tests are performed.”

HEAVY RAINS

The Huruma building collapsed following heavy rains that pounded parts of Nairobi causing flooding.

As of Sunday afternoon, Red Cross announced that Nairobi County was among the worst affected by the rains, with an estimated 792 households being affected and 73 people have been reported missing.

The National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA) also released a list of 13 roads motorists should avoid during downpour due to risks of flooding.