PRESIDENT William Ruto has defended the government plans to privatise the Kenyatta International Convention Centre (KICC) the iconic building at Kenya’s capital, Nairobi.

Ruto however said the government has no intention of selling the Ksh30 billion worth building, constructed in 1971. He said the idea is to commercialise the 28 storey buying and its conical Aannex, through a strategic investor.

The intention is to commercialise, have a strategic invest and make it a true conference facility.

The proposed privatisation of several other state corporations has raised debate across the country. But its the proposed privatisation of KICC that has heightened emotions with most Kenyans opposing the plan.

The building which stands out as the landmark of Nairobi City, was built by the Jomo Kenyatta administration and named after the founding father of the nation.

But in a joint, end year interview with several media houses at State House this evening, Ruto defended the proposed privatisation saying it was aimed at raising revenue from KICC from the current Ksh29 million to about ksh3billion a year.

“KICC is being managed inefficiently. Last year KICC made Ksh29 million and Ksh40million the previous year. KICC is worth Ksh30billion,” the President told media houses..

Ruto said the government had pumped Ksh1.8 billion mid this year to make KICC usable for the the African Climate Summit.

“Instead of having office blocks at the KICC why not transform it to the international conference center for which it was built”? He said.

KICC is not being sold to anyone. Just allow me to get a strategic investor and I will not do it at night. People will continue taking photos on it but that is not what KICC was made for,” he quipped adding that commercialising it would fetch Ksh3 billion a year nominally.

Ruto said KICC was not working as a conference center due to lack of facilities. He said major hotels in Nairobi had closed down because Kenya has no international conference facilities to support tourism and hotel industry.

He said the government would even get a strategic investor for Bomas of Kenya, a state owned cultural center in Langata just outside Nairobi CBD.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *