Govt Seeks to Protect Tenants With New Demands for Landlords

  • A block of apartments in Nairobi, Kenya.
    A block of apartments in Nairobi, Kenya.
    File
  • Land Cabinet Secretary, Zacharia Njeru, announced new measures to protect tenants from collapsing buildings. 

    According to Njeru, landlords and owners of building for public use will be required to insure their buildings before they are approved for use. 

    Speaking in Kisumu during the annual Surveyors conference on Friday, November 11, the CS noted the move was aimed at promoting quality buildings.

    "It is our duty as the government to protect the public. We intend to make it mandatory that all infrastructure be used only if insured against third-party liability," he stated.

    Lands Cabinet Secretary Nominee Zacharia Njeru speaks to the press on September 28, 2022.
    Lands Cabinet Secretary Nominee Zacharia Njeru speaks to the press on September 28, 2022.
    File

    He also declared that the policies and legislation will be made available for public participation and later be handed to Parliament for approval.

    "The goal is to set standards in the places we live, work, worship, and recreate in order to avoid the risk of degeneration of these assets,” Njeru stated.

    He also vowed to implement the rollout of the National Land Information Management System (NLIMS), known as Ardhi sasa app, launched by retired President Uhuru Kenyatta in 2021.

    "The ministry is in the process of digitising land records," he declared.

    Notably, when buildings collapse, the victims are left chasing compensation. Some succumbed after they are stuck under the debris. 

    CS Njeru hoped that the policies would effect immediate change and heap pressure on landlords to adhere to construction laws. 

    On Monday, November 7, an incomplete eight-storey building collapsed in Tassia Embakasi, causing several tenants on the ground floor to lose their businesses. Several people were also trapped inside. 

    Weak foundations and poor house design were cited as the main reason for the collapse of the building. 

    An image of the building that collapsed in Tassia, Embaklasi on Monday, November 7, 2022..jpg
    An image of the building that collapsed in Tassia, Embakasi on Monday, November 7, 2022.
    Ali Manzu