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Elation as AHP beneficiaries receive keys to their new homes

The handover marks the beginning of residents of Nakuru becoming house owners of low-cost houses under the Affordable Housing Programme

President William Ruto on Saturday handed over keys to beneficiaries of the recently completed Affordable Housing units in Bondeni, Nakuru County.

Some 360 residents were ushered into their new homes from the 605 units constructed under the Affordable Housing Programme.

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“This is the era where low-income earners will own homes. They will not pay rent all their lives,” said the head of state during the handover ceremony.

The housing project comprised 45 one-bedroom houses, which have been sold for Sh1.55 million, 180 two-bedroom units selling for Sh3.15 million each, and 380 three-bedroom houses, which are going for Sh4.25 million per unit.

Ruto who visited and interacted with the occupants of some completed houses said the Affordable and Social Housing Agenda remains a key pillar of the Kenya Kwanza coalition manifesto. He said his administration is dedicated to ensuring access to decent and affordable housing for all Kenyans.

Some of the beneficiaries of affordable homes in Nakuru include civil servants, a Mama Mboga, a hawker, a hairdresser, and a Jua Kali artisan.

Jane Mumbi Muchina, who is 48, lives in Abongoloya Estate, Bondeni. She secured a one-bedroom house. She is a widow with two children and has lived in this area for more than ten years paying a house rent of Kshs. 1,500.

Jane is a Mama Mboga business lady in the city center. Her monthly income ranges between Kshs. 5000-10,000.

David Muchiri Gakiri is another new homeowner of a one-bedroom house. He has lived in the area for more than 15 years also paying a house rent of Kshs. 1,500. He operates as a Jua Kali artisan with a monthly income that ranges between Kshs. 10,000-15,000.

Another resident of Kivumbini, 59-year-old Shinde Shariff Yahya who operates as a hawker in Nakuru, got keys to a new home Saturday. The mother of six has lived in the town for the last 30 years.

A hairdresser who resides and works in Bondeni was among the beneficiaries ushered to their new homes. Anne Muthoni Anne, a mother of four, has been running her business for the last 18 years in the town. She got a two-bedroom house.

Sheila Jemutai Chesire, a Civil servant aged 46 years also benefited from the programme. Sheila who has been in service for the last 13 years currently works at the Ministry of Lands, Public Works, Housing and Urban Development as a Cleaning Supervisor.

“This handover marks the beginning of residents of Nakuru becoming house owners of low-cost houses under the Affordable Housing Programme,” Nakuru Governor Susan Kihika said

The Governor said out of 605 houses in the Bondeni project, 484 units, which account for 80 percent were set aside for sale to interested citizens under the Affordable Housing programme while the remaining 212 units were reserved for civil servants under the Civil Service Mortgage Scheme.

Besides the 605 units that were launched on Saturday, she said the current target for affordable housing within the cosmopolitan city stood at 10,000 units.

President Ruto reiterated his government’s commitment to the programme even as he highlighted the role and impact of the housing levy in the rollout of the AHP projects.

“It is that 1.5 percent that you pay that we have used to reduce the mortgage from 20 percent to six percent,” Ruto said.

“If you went to the open market for a mortgage to buy this house you will pay 20 percent but now under this programme you are all paying six percent,” he added.

Governor Kihika further disclosed that her administration had completed the design and specifications for another 3,000 units to be built within the city of Nakuru.

She said the Nakuru County Government, in collaboration with the State Department of Housing, advertised the first lot of 2,000 units to be built in Naivasha.

According to President Ruto, the Affordable Housing Project has created more than 120,000 jobs adding that the number will have more than doubled next year when 300,000 people will be employed through it.

“The direct employees of this project include engineers, architects, designers, surveyors, masons, plumbers, and un-skilled labourers,” he said.

Ruto, who was accompanied by a host of leaders during his development tour of Nakuru county, said 20,000 houses were set to be built in the region through the Affordable Housing Project.

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