The Governor Nairobi Mike Sonko has held down the construction of AVIC Tower on Waiyaki Way on grounds that it’s partly built on public land.
The cost of constructing the Chinese-owned building, adjacent to Villa Rosa Kempinski Hotel, is estimated to be Sh6.9 billion.
“We have suspended the construction and arrested over 15 contractors who include 10 Chinese nationals,” County Director of Communications Elkana Jacob told the Star by phone on Thursday.
According to the charge sheet, the contractors will be charged with erecting the building without approved plans, contrary to Section 30(2) of the Physical Planning Act.
Among the Chinese contractors arrested are Grace Lee, Leo Lu, Micael Chen, Javis Wu and Len Li. The arrests came a day after Kiambu Governor Ferdinand Waititu’s wife Susan was held for constructing a building within the city without approvals.
Waititu reported acquired the seven-story Koinange Street building from Jamii Bora Bank early this year at a cost of Sh250 million.
He told the Star that the repairs he was undertaking were the genesis of the arrest and eventual prosecution of his wife.
An alleged phone conversation between Waitutu and Sonko went viral on Wednesday. In it, the Kiambu county boss asks Sonko to secure his wife’s release.
She was charged alongside other suspects and released on Sh80,000 cash bail.
The development came just days after Waititu opposed the demolition of illegal buildings saying an alternative should be found. He proposed the diversion of rivers.