City buildings must be painted afresh: County

The county government has ordered owners of commercial buildings in the city to paint, repaint or decorate their buildings within a month.

The county administration is concerned that some of the buildings have faded paint and cracked walls.

Yesterday, City Manager Dorrice Ombara and City Engineer Kevin Ajul said building owners who failed to comply would face severe penalties.

Speaking to the press at City Hall, the two officials said the county had already waived fees charged on such services.

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"But we are surprised that even with the waiver, few property owners have complied. So we may now be forced to compel them to do so," Mr Ajul said.

The order also targets houses that have been left undeveloped for several years.

According to Ms Ombara, the county government law requires property owners to repaint their premises after one or two years, but many had not complied.

After the one-month notice expires, city managers plan to conduct physical checks on all buildings and penalise those who have not complied.

This is in accordance with the Public Health Act Cap 242 of the Laws of Kenya.

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Governor Anyang Nyong'o said Kisumu, being a commercial hub in East Africa, needed to invest in beatification to attract more investors.

"We want Kisumu to be a shining city where everyone wants to be," he said. "All buildings should be repainted in the city's bid to boost its aesthetic value and make it clean and glittering."

Commercial premise owners can either maintain or change their original colours.

A tour of city streets yesterday showed some buildings had been neglected for years.

Poor state

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Most that were in a poor state were on Bank Street, Oginga Odinga Street, Obote Road, Kenyatta Avenue and Ring Road.

Only Lodwa, Busia and Ojijo Oteko roads have freshly painted buildings.

Ajul said they had also issued demolition notices to people who had put up structures on road reserves.

"In this new drive, we are also going to purge illegal structures erected on either riparian land or road reserves," said Ajul.

County Roads Executive Thomas Ondijo disclosed that they had earmarked all such premises and they would soon be pulled down.

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County GovernmentKisumu CountyPainting OrdersCity Manager Dorrice OmbaraCity Engineer Kevin AjulCity HallAnyang Nyongó