LAVINGTON

Sh20 million facelift for Nairobi governor's residence

Will be renovated to make it more comfortable, improve indoor climate, provide new appliances

In Summary

• Governor's official residence passed through various hands,  as subject of court case and feud between NMS and former Governor Mike Sonko.

• In 2002, former Lands Minister Noah Katana Ngala allocated the house to himself and lived there for 10 years. The EACC took him to court and he returned property

 

Nairobi City County Hall.
CITY HALL: Nairobi City County Hall.
Image: FILE

City Hall plans to spend Sh20 million to renovate the official governor's residence in Lavington, which has been unoccupied for three years.

The five-bedroom house on 0.8 acre is on Isaac Gathanju Close in Lavington.

The residence was last used by former executive for education Anne Lokidor in 2018. Former Governor Mike Sonko did not use it, instead preferring his Runda residence and his Mua Hills home in Machakos.

“The Sh20 million will make improvements to enhance living comfort and the indoor climate," the Nairobi Annual Development Plan reads. It covers the period ending June 30, 2023.

The renovation will include painting, replacing fixtures and hardware and replacing outdated features and appliances.

Nairobi’s last mayor before Devolution, George Aladwa, now Makadara MP, was the last mayor to occupy the house.

In 2002, former Lands Minister Noah Katana Ngala allocated the house to himself and lived there for 10 years.

In 2012, the former Minister and his wife were arrested by the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission in connection with the allocation of the property.

They entered into an agreement with the EACC and the property was returned to the public.

The former mayor’s house was supposed to be handed over to Nairobi’s first Governor Evans Kidero in 2013 but he chose to stay in his Muthaiga home. The house was left for education CEC Lokidor.

On November 14, 2018, Lokidor was evicted even as she claimed she had been paying Sh35,000 monthly as rent to City Hall.

On June 5 that year, she sued City Hall after she received a letter asking her to vacate the residence.

After filing first at the Milimani commercial courts, then the High Court, the case was sent to the Land Court for directions.

Lokidor said she spent Sh1.5 million to renovate the house after she reclaimed it from the former Lands Minister.

Last July, Sonko and Nairobi Metropolitan Services director-general Mohamed Badi were feuding over the residence.

The former county boss announced he had taken possession of the governor’s residence and county staff had begun renovating it.

Badi, the new sheriff, warned Sonko to keep off the house as it was under the NMS, based on the deed of transfer of city functions and had been sealed off by police.

The Deed of Transfer Agreement signed last year in February placed Nairobi's four main functions — Health, Roads, Lands and Environment—under the national government.

The house is currently under maintenance by the NMS.

 

(Edited by V. Graham)