TWO DEAD

Collapsed building had been stopped, says NCA

Authority says the building did not meet safety and other construction standards

In Summary
  • At least three people are believed to be trapped under the rubble of a two -storey building that collapsed in Kisumu.
  • Rescuers retrieved the bodies of two women from the rubble.
  • NCA says it had stopped works at the site.
Rescue mission underway at a two-storey building which collapsed at Mamboleo Estate in Kisumu on September 13, 2021.
Rescue mission underway at a two-storey building which collapsed at Mamboleo Estate in Kisumu on September 13, 2021.
Image: Richard Ogendo

 

The construction of a building that collapsed in Kisumu on Monday had been stopped by authorities before the tragedy happened.

At least three people are believed to be trapped under the rubble of the two-storey building that crumbled in Mamboleo, Kisumu.

The National Construction Authority said it had stopped the construction of the building.

Rescuers retrieved the bodies of two women from the rubble on Monday. 

Nyanza NCA regional coordinator Amos Musau told journalists they had stopped construction works at the site.

"The building was inspected twice and the last time our officers were at the site was in May. We had directed the developer to stop construction," Musau said.

He added that the authority stopped the works after it was established that the building did not meet safety and other construction standards. 

However, it was not clear how workers continued working at the site four months after the NCA directive.

Building inspectors from the authority and those from the city's planning department are known to frequently visit construction sites to carry out routine inspections.

By Monday evening, a rescue mission was still underway.

One of the victims, pulled out of the rubble had her right hand still clutching at a steel rod.

Jared Odhiambo, a survivor, said the victims were members of the same family.

"A man and two women were trapped under the rubble when the weight of the floor came down," Odhiambo said.

They brought food to the construction workers according to the survivor.

"I was on the other side of the building when it began shaking. Within seconds, the building came down." 

It was not clear how many workers were at the site at the time of the tragedy with claims that 60 workers were present.

The workers were doing slab casting. 

Several workers were rushed to various hospitals within the county.

The owner of the building was reportedly amongst those who were taken to hospital.

Another survivor who sought anonymity said the developer was at the site at the time of the accident.

"He was here monitoring the progress of the ongoing construction and taking pictures," he said.

Efforts by teams from Kisumu county government, Red Cross, NCA officers and the police to rescue those trapped under the rubble were greatly hampered by lack of appropriate equipment. 

An excavator used in the rescue operation was donated by workers building the Kisumu-Mamboleo road.

Kisumu East subcounty police commander James Musyimi said investigations into the incident had begun.



Edited by Amol Awuor