Appellate court declines to stop demolition of five star hotel in Gigiri


It is another blow for businessman Praful Kumar after the court of appeal dismissed a case he had filed against the Nairobi County Government after demolition of his hotel last year.

Appellate Court judges Mohamed Warsame, Daniel Musinga and Prof Otieno Odek ruled that the application by Whitehorse Investments limited, the developer of Hotel Grand Manor, near United Nations headquarters in Gigiri, had no merit.

This is after the Grand Manor hotel filed an appeal seeking orders to stop further demolition of the hotel.

Nairobi County Government had served the businessman with enforcement notices on 14th December 2017 requiring them to stop further construction of the hotel.

The five-star hotel, which is being constructed in was demolished in December 2018 after the owner failed to convince the Employment and Labour relations court to stopped notices issued to the owner, demanding the structure to be pulled down.

“We find no merit in this appeal which we dismiss with costs to the Nairobi County Government,” the bench ruled.

Justice ELCR judge Benard Eboso dismissed the petition by Whitehorse Investments limited, saying the businessman had failed to appeal against the decision by the County Government at the physical planning liaison committee before moving to the Environment and Land Court.

The businessman said he had obtained all the required approvals from the County for the construction of the hotel.

He claimed he was shocked to receive the letter asking him to stop further construction and remove the foundation.

Attempt by Whitehorse Investments limited lawyer Kithinji Marete to secure stay orders pending appeal were decline despite endless effort to plead with the judge.

He told the court that the U.S embassy which is near the hotel is behind the the demolition and they have been conducting surveillance on the top of the multi-million hotel.

The court heard that the project was 75 per cent complete and he had spent over Sh200 million in the construction.

He further told the court that he had paid the inspection fee of Sh 2.9 million and it was upon the County Government to undertake the inspection because it was their duty.

The court heard that the hotel was being constructed with high standards by reputable contractor and supervision was being done by qualified professionals.

Through lawyer Harrison Kinyanjui, Nairobi County Government said the notice was issued with Section 30(1) of the Physical Planning Act and the Nairobi County building by-laws, a legal framework which is geared towards containing and controlling developments within the city.

The lawyer said the Act provides for mechanisms for appeal to the liaison committee, which the proprietor had ignored.