Kitale: Eight Escape Death as Building Collapses

The collapsed part of the Shallom Maize store at Matisi market in Trans Nzoia that subsequently fell on an adjacent eight door rental house and left eight people with injuries. Photo/Aspect News

Eight people are nursing injuries at Matisi market in Trans Nzoia County after a Maize store collapsed and fell on their rental house which is on an adjacent plot.

The Shalom Maize store is said to have cracked its walls and eventually collapsed after a suspected overload of Maize bags, however its owner has linked the collapse to an ongoing road construction that might have weakened its foundation.

“My wife and kids were trapped in the debris but it took the assistance of neighbours to aid us in rescuing them upon which they were taken to the hospital for treatment,” said Mr. Abdi Asman , one of the tenants.

 Amina Mohammed who is one of the residents said the incident caught them unawares and they are now wondering how they will survive since they have been rendered homeless after the eight door house collapsed.

Area county commissioner Samson Ojwang said the ones who were affected have been admitted at the Kitale county hospital where they are undergoing treatment while the store is being cleared to ascertain if they are other people trapped inside.

“We have tasked a team from the department of public works to ascertain if the construction of this store met all the required standards as prescribed by the National Construction Authority guidelines,” said Mr. Ojwang.

He said the owner of the building will be prosecuted if it will be ascertained that he did not observe all the required regulations when putting up the facility to set precedence to those who are putting up buildings in the region.

The owner Hanna Wanjiku however insisted the construction of the house met all the required standards and instead blamed its collapse on the ongoing construction of the Kitale-Suam highway which is adjacent.

“My late husband and I put up this house while considering all the guidelines of construction. This building began developing cracks the moment the caterpillars begun clearing ground for construction of the Kitale-Suam highway,” said Mrs Wanjiku.