It is rather strange that the Nairobi County Assembly’s Planning, Housing and Lands Committee appears to have realised now that only about a quarter of Nairobi’s residential estates are compliant with planning requirements. This is an admission by the authorities that they are sleeping on the job.
It is obvious to anyone that Nairobi is a poorly planned city, especially in the slums and low-income estates.
In March, the Nairobi Regeneration Committee team told a parliamentary panel that plans were under way to demolish at least 500,000 buildings valued at more than Sh500 billion.
The buildings either stand on public land, road reserves and wetlands or were built without City Hall approval, the committee said at the time.
Cases of structures that are not compliant with building standards have in the past resulted in deaths and injuries after their collapse.
The Nairobi Regeneration Committee called off demolitions after an outcry from investors, who raised concerns on the legality of the demolitions given that the owners of the buildings had valid regulatory approvals.