Business: Government owned hotel almost auctioned over Sh18m arrears

Auctioneers Thursday descended on the State-owned Sunset Hotel over accrued VAT arrears amounting to Sh18 million.

The auctioneers, acting for the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA), camped at the posh hotel built on the lake shore as the management, led by manager Joseph Oduor, made frantic calls to save the facility that was at one time put up for sale.

"This is a small matter but all I can assure you is that we are on it and trying to resolve it with the urgency it deserves. I'm certain we will conclude it in sufficient time. So don't worry," Mr Oduor said.

But attempts to attach their movable assets was unsuccessful after the manager quickly informed the county authorities tasked with the oversight supervisory role of the hotel's board.

The county government holds 5 per cent shares in the hotel while 95 per cent is owned by Kenya Tourist Development Corporation.

Yesterday, after the county authorities got wind of attempts to attach assets belonging to the hotel, Governor Jack Ranguma sent county legal advisor Amos Omollo, who temporarily stopped the auctioneers sent by KRA head office to recover the arrears.

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Mr Omollo disclosed KRA was demanding Sh11 million from the hotel and another cumulative penalty of Sh7 million.