VP's House unveiled
The official residence of our Vice President was officially unveiled yesterday, 15th Nov 2012 by our president His Excellency Mwai Kibaki. The occasion was graced by our Vice President and other government officials.
Here's more on the house
Source: The Standard, By ALLY JAMAH
Eight years and Sh383 million later, the palatial home that would house the Vice-Presidents now stands magnificently, expectantly awaiting its first occupant to enjoy its luxuries and comforts.
Sitting atop 10-acre lush green grass in Nairobi’s Karen area, the official residence for the VP was officially unveiled by President Kibaki yesterday in a function attended by Vice-President Kalonzo Musyoka among other dignitaries.
Despite being marred by controversies and delays, the residence promises its occupants total luxury. It has spacious bedrooms for the VP, his family and guests. This includes a master bedroom, three children’s bedrooms and two guest wings in the main house.
The VP’s bathroom has a classy Jacuzzi as well as a shower cubicle that allows soft, calming music to filter in as the VP enjoys a shower or a leisurely bath.
There is also a separate guesthouse to accommodate visiting dignitaries. The ground floor of the posh house has a library, washrooms and another visitor’s bedroom complete with a Jacuzzi and a shower cubicle.
The first floor houses the living room, two bedrooms for children and the VP’s.
The VP’s vehicles and those of his visitors will be parked in a garage capable of holding at least six cars attached to the main house.
The complex also has an office block, which consists of the VP’s office, a boardroom, press centre, interpreter’s room, lounge and caretaker’s office.
The Comptroller’s block has several offices, bedrooms and a study room. It also has six security rooms, a common sitting room and kitchen and an armoury whose walls are reinforced with steel.
All the floor finishings comprise of high-quality marble, while the doors are made of dark hardwood.
The manicured lush gardens at the back of the house will be a perfect venue for official functions such as dinners, luncheons and cocktails.
The expansive office block can accommodate all staff working in the VP’s office.
Yesterday, Kalonzo would not confirm if he would move into his new official home.
“I am yet to decide if it makes sense to come and stay here with only three months left to the General Election. One has to pray hard and see whether it is worth it. But this is meant for future VPs,” he said.
“I am sure everyone now wants to be a running mate of some of the presidential candidates so they can end up occupying this wonderful facility,” he joked.
He also admitted that even if he moves in, he may not utilise some of the house’s facilities such as the large swimming pool as he cannot swim.
Unfortunately, even if the current VP wanted to move in tomorrow, he wouldn’t since the complex is still being furnished.
This is expected to take several weeks and millions more shillings taking the total budget to over Sh400 million.
Kalonzo said the imposing residence would not only boost the country’s image, but also cut the huge costs of hosting visiting foreign dignitaries, especially VPs.
In his speech yesterday, the President said the residence couldn’t have come at a better time, saying the VP will now have a convenient location from which to serve Kenyans.
“We have not had an official residence for the VP. The Government has had to renovate the personal residences of those appointed to the position of VP, mainly to upgrade security,” said Kibaki.
He added: “To avoid the inconveniences and recurrent expenditures associated with this approach, we took the strategic decision to construct this official residence.”
Security officers who spoke to The Standard on condition of anonymity, however, said the concrete fence at the front of the residence needs to be raised up.
Public Works Minister Chris Obure said the original contractor, M/s Dimken Kenya Limited, was awarded the tender for the residence on January 25, 2006 at a contract sum of Sh197,004,780 and was expected to complete the project on January 27, 2007.
However, the contract was terminated on October 21, 2008 due to non-performance despite the contractor having been paid Sh69,975,895.
Following termination of the Dimken contract, the Government awarded the tender to a new company, Vittorio Veneziano, at a contract sum of Sh383,066,066.