A court in Kenya has allowed police to hold the owner the school where eight children died and 64 others were injured after some classrooms collapsed. The man can be held for 15 days to allow police to complete investigations into the tragedy.

Moses Wainana was arrested on Thursday and is likely to face murder charges. Some parents have asked the Kenyan government to reopen the school.

He cut a lonely figure as he sat head bowed throughout court proceedings on Friday. Wainana is the proprietor of Precious Talents, which until Monday’s tragedy accommodated just over 800 pupils.

His arraignment came a day after the country’s education ministry closed his school and ordered parents to transfer their children to neighbouring public schools. Police sought to have him held for a further two weeks – to complete investigations into the classrooms’ collapse.

They argued that he was likely to influence witnesses and that his life may be in danger as parents come to terms with the events that led to the death of their children.

The magistrate granted the application. Wainana is likely to face murder charges.