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Homereal estatesIconic KICC Building: Ownership, Features And Plans To Sell Iconic Building

Iconic KICC Building: Ownership, Features And Plans To Sell Iconic Building

For several years, the Kenyatta International Convention Centre (KICC) was the tallest building in Nairobi and still remains one of the most iconic structures in the country.

Its proximity to major five-star hotels has made it one of the most sought-after venues for national and international events and conferences.

In this article, WoK delves into the building’s ownership, features, and plans to sell the iconic landmark.

Building and Design

KICC was initially drafted in the 1960s as a four-storey structure that was to serve as KANU headquarters.

However, under the guidance of then-president Jomo Kenyatta, the building was designed by Norwegian architect Karl Henik alongside Kenyan architect David Mutiso as the 28-storey masterpiece we now see today.

According to Henrik, the building’s shape was inspired by the open and closed lotus flower.

Constructing the building cost the government approximately Ksh 80 million.

Surprisingly, current documents show that KICC, which is now a state corporation under the Ministry of Tourism, is not owned by the government.

KANU Asset

Commissioned several years ago, KICC hosts several government offices, including those of senators and some ministers.

According to Business Daily, It is not clear who owns the land on which the building stands.

This was after a 2021 audit by Auditor General Nancy Gathungu showed that the land on which the building stands was not registered under KICC.

However, the identity of the person who owns the land, which is valued at sh 2.29 billion, has never been revealed to the public.

In fact, there has been an ongoing tussle over the ownership of the iconic building, which the former ruling party KANU considers as one of its assets.

Although KANU was kicked out of KICC in 2003 through an executive order by then information and tourism minister Raphael Tuju, the party has continued to consider KICC as one of its assets in its filings to the registrar of political parties.

In 2012, KANU Secretary General Nick Salat claimed the party had a title deed of the building and listed it as one of its assets.

Salat listed buildings worth over Ksh4.5 billion and assets of Ksh1.5 billion in KANU’s returns.

He added that the party was receiving bills for unpaid power at KICC worth over sh 400 million, a sign that the building might truly be one of their assets.

This would make KANU the richest party in the country.

However, according to Gathungu’s financial statements, KICC had not included its parking lot as part of its land.

Further, the Jomo Kenyatta monument was not included among the corporation’s assets.

However, the land on which Garden Square restaurant stands was gazetted by former head of public service Joseph Kinyua as belonging to KICC.


According to a 2019 audit, the value of KICC assets, including property, equipment, and plant, was valued at Ksh4.04 billion.

The report valued the 28-story building at just over Ksh1.6 billion, while the parking lot of KICC was worth at least Ksh2.2 billion as of 2019.

The furniture was valued at Ksh21.5 million while the office equipment was valued at Ksh 55.3 million.


Recently, KICC was listed among several parastatals that were proposed to be privatized by the Ministry of National Treasury and Economic Planning Ministry.

Others were Kenya Pipeline Company (KPC), the New Kenya Cooperative Creameries (KCC), the Kenya Literature Bureau (KLB), National Oil Corporation of Kenya (NOCK), Kenya Seed Company Limited (KSCL), and Mwea Rice Mills Ltd (MRM), among others.

The privatization move was aimed at garnering more revenue for the government while reducing demand for government services.

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