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Youths injured in collapsed Kiamaiko building were salvaging scrap metal, says City Hall

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Earlier, area residents said the demolition of the building was halted when its structure weakened, leading to its collapse. 

Nairobi County has broken its silence over the collapse of the Kiamaiko building on Tuesday afternoon at Area 1 in Mathare Sub-county. 

As of Tuesday night, 10 people with minor injuries were rescued, according to the Red Cross, which added that its Action Team attended to the victims at the accident scene. 



Reports further added that the victims were caught off guard by the ongoing demolition of the building, which was constructed on riparian land. 

However, in a statement on Wednesday, the county revealed that the people who were injured when the partially demolished building collapsed had gone to salvage scrap metal. 

"The incident occurred when a group of youths entered the demolition site to salvage scrap metal. The building subsequently collapsed on them," said Collina Orage, Mathare North sub-county administrator.

Nairobi City County Government's Disaster Management Team, the National Youth Service (NYS) and the National Police are still collaborating in search and rescue operations while also clearing debris.

Earlier, area residents said the demolition of the building was halted when its structure weakened, leading to its collapse. 

Kenyan Red Cross workers conduct a search and rescue operation on the rubble of a residential flat built on riparian land, that collapsed while undergoing demolition near the Mathare River in Nairobi on May 14, 2024. (Photo: Thomas Mukoya/Reuters)


The incident comes barely a week after a five-story building collapsed in Nairobi's Mountain View Ward on Tuesday, May 7. 

Photos and videos seen by the Eastleigh Voice showed the building was leaning on one side. A tenant further told the Eastleigh Voice that the residents raised an alarm with the landlady at around 4 am on the fateful date after they saw cracks emerging on one of its columns.

Nairobi County's Chief Officer for Urban Development and Planning, Patrick Analo Akivaga, confirmed the same and added that all tenants were accounted for.

On May 3, 2024, Interior CS Kithure Kindiki ordered the demolition of structures and buildings illegally constructed along riparian land near rivers within Nairobi. 

The directive affected all residents living within 30 metres of the Ngong, Mathare, and Nairobi rivers.

Kindiki further directed the Nairobi Regional and County Security Teams to work with the Nairobi City County Government and the National Disaster Operation Centre (NDOC) to ensure the immediate and mandatory vacation of people living along the rivers.

However, the demolition of the structures was to begin immediately after the owners or residents moved to safer places.

Nairobi County officials demolish houses in Kitui Village, Kamukunji on May 6, 2024, after the government ordered residents in flood-risky areas to vacate. (Photo: Ahmed Shafat)Nairobi County officials demolish houses in Kitui Village, Kamukunji, on May 6, 2024, after the government ordered residents in flood-risky areas to vacate. (Photo: Ahmed Shafat)

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