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How government saved Weston Hotel from possible demolition

The Government on Thursday announced the suspension of the demolitions countrywide on the same day the National Land Commission (NLC) was to determine the fate of Nairobi’s Weston Hotel.

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,” Kinyua said.

DEMOLITIONS STOPPED

The statement came just hours when the lands commission was to meet to make a crucial determination that would have sealed the fate of Weston Hotel, which is widely linked to Deputy President William Ruto.

The commission was to meet either to adopt the report or amend it before notifying parties to the matter, which include the Kenya Civil Aviation Authority (KCAA) and Weston.

On Thursday morning Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko also announced that all demolitions in the county should stop with immediate effect.

PULLED DOWN

Mr Sonko reportedly issued the executive orders after speaking on phone to President Uhuru Kenyatta.

In the last several months, several structures in Nairobi have pulled down in Kileleshwa, Westlands, Lang’ata and Eastlands areas.

Airgate Centre, formerly Taj Mall, in Embakasi and the Grand Manor Hotel in Gigiri are among the most notable multi-million shilling properties in the city which have so far been demolished.

Other buildings have also been brought down in Nairobi are the Java House and Shell Petrol Station in Kileleshwa, Ukay Mall and a section of Visa Oshwal Centre.