The Government has reiterated its commitment towards the construction of 200 housing units in the 290 constituencies in the Country.
So far the Government has awarded 17 contracts in lot 1 for development and advertised a further 35 in lot 2.
State Department for Housing and Urban Development PS Charles Hinga said the Affordable Housing program isn’t a preserve of Nairobi County and its environs thus the decision to roll out in constituencies.
The PS further said the Government is building over 30,000 housing units for the police a majority of whom live in deplorable conditions yet they have a right to decent and affordable housing.
Access to housing shapes cities, and demand for housing will continue to increase not just in the Country but globally due to urbanization.
The PS said Kenya has one of the highest income inequalities in the World and as a result a majority of the population can’t afford to own a house.
The Affordable Housing Program is therefore one of the Government initiatives to reduce the inequalities and streamline the housing value chain.
The PS said behind the housing program there are employment opportunities for the youth, women in construction, the Jua Kali Sector among other enterprises.
“We are where we are because we left the housing problem to the private sector, we stopped funding National Housing Corporation which was behind estates like Jericho, Ziwani, Buruburu among others.”
The private Sector provides housing for only 3pc of the population and with the high cost of land in the Country, high coast of construction and lack of financing, home ownership becomes a dream.
This has culminated to the increase of informal settlements in the country. The PS says the Affordable Housing Program will cure the inequality by providing a platform for hustlers to own homes.
At the same time The Government is in the process of building 214,000 housing units for universities students where we have a demand of 640,000.
The PS spoke during a breakaway session during the devolution conference in Uasin Gishu dubbed ‘The Constitutional Right to Housing; A Reflection of the past 10 years of Devolution.’
Kitui Governor Julius Malombe said Counties will continue to partner with the National Government to make Affordable Housing a reality.
He lauded the ongoing collaborations on upgrading of informal settlements through the Kenya informal settlements improvement programme (KISIP) even as he emphasized on the need to make sure the houses benefit the low income groups.