Kibaki tells Architects, “You are Damn Expensive.”

Kibaki tells Architects, “You are Damn Expensive.”


Kenya’s President Mwai Kibaki has challenged professionals in the construction industry to partner with the government to facilitate swift implementation of projects that will improve the social welfare of citizens.

President Kibaki noted that prohibitive consultancy fees charged by professionals in the industry frustrated project implementation apart from making even ordinary projects unattainable.

He said that there was need to tackle temptations of inflating consultancy fees adding that they must reflect realistic cost and asked the Architectural Association of Kenya to deal with the matter.

The Head of State noted that projects that directly benefited Kenyans were unnecessarily overpriced thus frustrating government’s efforts to improve the living standards of wananchi.

The President made the remarks on Monday when he met members of the Architectural Association of Kenya at his Harambee House Office.

The Head of State affirmed that many ordinary Kenyans intuitively knew the realistic cost of undertaking simple projects such as constructing a common classroom or other similar projects.

Urging the professionals to strive in meeting the expectations of the rural poor, President Kibaki noted that most of the construction materials were locally available, hence the need to price projects realistically.

He noted that many professionals were driven by the desire to make huge earnings, causing anguish to many Kenyans.

He challenged professionals to partner with government as the country embarked on an ambitious infrastructural development programme.

The Head of State told the professionals comprising architects, quantity surveyors, town planers, engineers, environmental design consultants and construction project managers that the government had channelled substantial funds through initiatives like the Constituency Development Fund.

The President noted there was need for prudent utilisation of the funds because of the many other public projects that needed funding across various sectors of the society.

Speaking during the occasion, Public Works Minister Chris Obure said the government was keen to work closely with the AAK particularly in developing the country’s infrastructure.

Mr Obure, however, decried the high rate at which qualified staff exited the public service for other lucrative appointments in the private sector, thus endangering the delivery of quality service to the public.

On his part, AAK Chairperson Mr Steven Oundo thanked President Kibaki and his government for rolling out one the most ambitious infrastructural development in the country’s history.

Mr Oundo affirmed that AAK was keen on partnering with the government in making Kenya a better country through the implementation of various development projects aimed at unlocking the country’s economic potential.

In attendance were Head of Public Service and Secretary to the Cabinet Amb. Francis Muthaura, Public Works Permanent Secretary Prof John Lonyangapuo and other senior government officials.

Source: Daily Nation


  1. he’s got no idea what he’s talking about.

    What about lawyers, doctors? Or are architect’s lesser than the other two in delivering professional services? I paid a dermatologists Kshs. 4000 for a less than 10mins consultation. We don’t charge… our clients for consultation. Not even a penny.

    What about his workmates waheshimiwa, who pocket a whole architect’s fee for doing nothing?
    He has no idea what happens on the drawing table to handing over of the project he better found another thing to talk about.

  2. yes i an architect , the fees vis a vis the work when properly executed is non comparable…If he wants to drive us to the same mess he did with the Economic Stimulus programmes, we’ll take him to court for encouraging proffesional misconduct

  3. How about setting price ceilings n price floors for cement,stones,metallic rods and all the other building paraphanelia,As an Economics student i think th govt should lower cement tax,n tax levied on metals

  4. bullshit. . . let him speak to lawyers first plus let him do the six year course. . .in ADD of all places

  5. A)we r nt protectd,ny jane,mary n anne cn go learn archicad n start ‘designin’ B) d universities shud up their game so d gov’t daent av 2 brng in expatriats n C)kibaki shud visit ADD n luk at how we work!

  6. ths kibaki guy has no idea wat we go thro.mpatie tracing paper na umwambie akae kwa light_box 4 2 days!!nkt.

  7. mr. president are still on ur senses. do ur calculation on the cost of putting up a project en tell me who pockets the most is it the professionals or ur government which pockets 16 percent of everything that goes to a project not to mention the very annoying tax that u charge on professional fee. style up

  8. Its really quiet simple mr. president, the amount you pay me is directly proportional to the level of proffessionalism that I manifest. I.e., the less you pay me, the less proffesional I get. Its ur call.

  9. Anything that touches is surely bound to elicit heated debates which is a good thing but the man is talking from experience and it is the first time i have heard a president say anything is damn expensive…yeah most architects like other professionals are robbing Kenyans with their copied inappropriate products and services

  10. ABSOLUTELY……. and I am yet to meet a Kenyan architect who fills his ENTIRE mandate as stipulated…. Many just draw and that’s it….. And speaking of drawings, don’t get me started on the quality of work done…… That said buildings designed in recent times are so unimpressive!!! Is KICC the last landmark building we will ever have in Kenya??? Will we ever produce a Norman Foster or Zaha Hadid….. Till we do, I think 2.0% will do in leiu of the ridiculous 6.0% for for blahhhhh architecture!!!

  11. Let him get a FUNDI to do the work for him if he thinks so and then get a quack instead of a doctor and see how expensive it will be to mend the mess. We honestly need to appreciate the different professions. I think for a politician to comment on anything done proffesionally is laughable if what they do and the amount they justify for it is antyhing to go by

  12. like most kenyans has no idea whatsoever what he is talking about..Architecture is not a market stall or warehouse where prices are bargained. its a noble profession that shapes and defines a country’s urban landscape!

  13. Like many, he is looking at it as ‘just drawing a couple of lines on a piece of paper,’ without considering the hard work, rigour and effort it takes to actualise a good design…

  14. How much are architects in Kenya paid? Could anyone point me in the direction of some general information or perhaps outline approximate wages? It would also make a useful addition to this story!



  15. He is very illiterate on this matter guys are paying millions to complete their studies which takes even to 10 years when will you ever recoup your investment, He should punguza kelele kwanza.

  16. hahahaaaaa… president,don”t u understand that Architecture is a NOBLE profession?……just as it is expensive to train an architect,lyk doctors tooo…so there brains ought to comensurate with their pay…

  17. In a way Kibaki is right. At the moment our scale of fees is regulated by CAP 525 4th Schedule. The cost has been fixed at 6% of total construction cost exclusive of VAT for normal works and 10% for renovations. There has been huge arguments with KRA on whether architects as professionals should pay VAT or not. I think this is still an on going argument but generally architects charge VAT. If you take all this in account architects in Kenya are expensive. We do not differentiate between small and large projects. The sliding scale of fees is hardly used in Kenya and is applicable for buildings costing less than £7000. Effectively, the law does not differentiate fees for a building costing KES10 billion and one costing KES1 million…it is just the amount the architect gets.

    Please bear in mind that percentages have been given a bad name by corruption in Kenya. We have all heard of 10% cut! Kenyans have thus learnt to calculate percentages. Unfortunately this is what people associate Architects with when they say that their fees are a percentage of the total building cost. A lot of suspicion arises due to the fact that most construction costs do not end up being what the professional promised in the first place. Is the architect allowing variations and cost escalation because he wants to inflate his fees?

    I hope the professionals who met with Kibaki asked him to change the way fees are charged by signing off a new legislation. There is one lying somewhere waiting to be signed. I think fee scales should be removed from the existing legislation. The law should refer to BORAQS as the fee regulatory board who would then set a sliding fee scale for projects within a certain cost range. This can be done in such a way that you have a high fee or low fee for buildings costing a certain range. This way one can “bargain” a fee not less than the lowest range but not undercut others as is the case when one uses percentages. Every year the fee scale would be adjusted to inflation and building costs. Have a look at how the South Africans are dealing with it:

    • Built Environment Professionals in other countries dont charge any cheaper.Could thos govt officials stop corrupting the professionals by asking to share their fees and then both agree to raise the % esp on govt projects.

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