Nairobi tenants have been arrested after failing to pay rent and threatening caretaker. 

A storm is brewing in Kabete, Nairobi after tenants at an apartment building clashed with the caretaker over rent arrears, leading to arrests, eviction notices and a pending court case.

An eviction notice from property management company Mark and Jedy on May 6 informed a tenant that he would have to vacate by May 31, accusing him of threatening to kill a caretaker, inciting fellow tenants and failing to pay rent.

Tenants refused to pay rent.

On May 6, a representative of Mark and Jedy claimed that, towards the end of April, a group of tenants had refused to pay rent and even came to their offices to threaten them.

He disclosed that they engaged officers from Kabete Police Station who took action and arrested some of the tenants, with a case pending in court.

Notice was genuine.

He further revealed that they had issued a number of tenants with eviction notices following the incident, asserting that the widely circulated notice was genuine.

Tenants were unruly.

It’s something I saw because I was in the office when they came. They were very loud and physical, and they were threatening everyone and insisting that they will not pay rent.

They added:

We called in officers from Kabete Police Station and some of them were arrested. In fact, there’s a pending case in court and we are awaiting directions.

Kabete OCPD George Seda was yet to respond to queries:

Residents at the apartment block, however, claimed that the accusations listed in the eviction notice were all false, alleging that they had earlier raised issues with the landlord who turned to the police to flex his muscle.

An anonymous source said:

It’s all lies to an extent, they can lie to achieve what they want. Apparently this guy has over 2,000 tenants spread across Nairobi, so when he heard we are all voicing concerns and planning to move out of all his apartments due to weird measures at the end of the month, he got scared and ran to the police station.

With the Covid-19 pandemic, many Kenyans have been struggling to fulfil their obligations to landlords across the country.

Cases of landlords evicting tenants over rent arrears have become headline news, with many calling for authorities to impose measures to protect both tenants and landlords feeling the economic pinch.

On April 1, the Landlords and Tenants Association of Kenya (LATAK) called for a rent waiver of three months to be declared.

They also called for a debt moratorium of six months to be placed on loans taken by landlords to finance their real estate projects.

The proposals were informed by the fact that many people had lost dependable sources of income during the pandemic.

(H/T Kenyan news)

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