, NAIROBI, Kenya, Aug 10 – The driver of one of the bulldozers that was demolishing Ukay Centre in Westland Friday morning narrowly escaped death after a section of the building crumbled on him.
His bulldozer was enveloped in a cloud of dust and his fate was only established after it settled down.
“Luckily he had opened the door. He would be dead by now,” a senior officer overseeing the operation told Capital FM News at the scene.
The bulldozer was partly covered in the rubble.
– Win for conservationists –
This is the third major demolition in days as the government moves to reclaim riparian lands.
Ukay Centre has been at the centre of controversy for being on a wetland for years.
While the government seeks to protect the environment, owners of the Sh1bn building argued that about 300 people risked losing employment.
Every rainy season, Ukay Centre hit the headlines for flooding.
The demolition started at 4am.
“The government should think about the jobs being lost. This is not right,” Jigna Sonigra told Capital FM News.
Southend, another multi-million shilling mall at the Lang’ata Road-Mbagathi Way roundabout, was demolished on Wednesday.
Earlier, Java restaurant and Shell Petrol Station in Kileleshwa were demolished.
Despite resistance, President Uhuru Kenyatta has vowed to sustain the crackdown that will so more than a thousand buildings, erected on wetlands demolished.