REVEALED: Owner of collapsed Kakamega building applied to construct water tank

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The owner of a two-storey building that collapsed killing one person and injuring nine at Butali market yesterday did not have approvals for the structure.

The developer presented the Kakamega urban planners with drawings for a water tank early this year but the application was declined for failing to meet requirements.

“The county government served the developer with orders to stop the construction but he ignored them,’ Kakamega county lands and urban planning executive Alfred Matianyi said.

Matianyi said that the developer did not receive clearance from the National Construction Authority (NCA) as required.

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The owner, who is on the run, is also accused of using low-quality materials.

The survivors of the mid-morning accident, one of them in critical condition, were rushed to the Kakamega County Referral and Malava Subcounty hospitals for treatment.

Kakamega county commissioner Pauline Dola yesterday asked the police to hunt the developer and charge him with murder and other offences.

Residents said that some people might still be trapped under the debris despite the rescue mission being called off.

“There is a lady who sells food to the workers here. She has been calling to say she is not dead and we have not seen her,” Wilbroda Sindani, a tailor at the market said.

One of the survivors who declined to be named told journalists that officials from the county government had been visiting the site weekly.

“They were here even last week and they cannot say they didn’t know the structure was going up,” the worker said.

A woman who only identified herself as Maria and worked on the site said that signs of collapse were evident.

“The house was never given time to cure as the standards require and when moving inside it one would notice something was wrong,” she said.

Residents search the rubble for survivors of the collapsed building at Butali market in Malava subcounty, Kakamega.

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