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State House Facelift: President Ruto to temporarily relocate during State House Nairobi renovations

12th January, 2024

President William Ruto will be away from the 117-year-old State House in Nairobi for two months to allow renovation.

Architects had warned that parts of the expansive colonial structure had become unfit for habitation and recommended the construction of a new building.

However, sources at State House told The Standard that the move was vetoed by the President who insisted that only renovations be done given that building a new presidential residence would cost upward of Sh2 billion.

“A new residence would have cost over Sh2 billion. The President said this is not the right time to spend such an amount with the burden he has of delivering his agenda,” said the source.
In November 2022, two months after the President was sworn in among the supplementary budget presented by the Kiharu MP Ndindi Nyoro led Budget and Appropriations Committee report to Parliament was an additional Sh2.6 billion and Sh9.9 billion over the increased allocations to State House to finance renovations.
“The president looked at the budgets that were being paid for the use of tents at State House lawns and the figures were outrageous. It had become a cash cow for those at the Interior and Coordination office and the Head of State said this must stop,” said a source.

A new presidential pavilion that can host between 1,000 and 1,500 people has been constructed. The pavilion has offices where the president can host smaller meetings with visiting dignitaries.