Illegal billboards in city estates will soon be done away with. This follows complaints from landlords that the billboards erected in front of residential and businesses premises have led to huge losses.
Chief sub-county administrator John Ntoiti yesterday ordered that billboards and signs erected without the county’s approval be brought down, warning that the owners would be charged.
Ntoiti pointed out areas such as Roysambu and Pipeline estates, which he said had flouted billboard regulations and instructed the owners to bring them down. Other areas are Pangani and Embakasi.
“The owners of the billboards should bring them down before the county moves in to uproot them and charge them,” said Ntoiti.
He said most of the billboards in Roysambu were irregularly erected and had no approval from the county government. Some, he said, had been erected on road reserves.
“There has been no clampdown operation of late, but I will be instructing my officers to look into the issue,” he added.
Ntoiti said the power to remove the billboards had been devolved to the sub-county administrator by a bill awaiting assent by Nairobi Governor Evans Kidero.
City Hall charges Sh30,000 for the approval and stamping of posters and those found contravening this law may attract a fine of Sh100,000 or face six months in jail.
Mark Owiti, a spare parts seller in Roysambu, said the sudden influx of billboards in the area had seen him lose a sizeable number of clients. Owiti said a billboard had blocked the entrance to his business and was now seeking the county government’s intervention.
“If the owner of the building does not pull it down, then he should compensate me for the losses my business has incurred,” he said.
Being a political year, the city is currently facing an influx of billboards and posters, most with aspirants trying to woo the electorate. A spot check by Metropolitan revealed that the posters had been plastered on pathways, walls on public utilities and even on animals. Interestingly, there has also been adoption of digital billboards, which demand a lot of space on buildings they are mounted on.
Kenyatta Avenue, Kimathi Street and the Bus station termini are examples of the places where billboards are mounted as they attract hundreds of curious onlookers there.