Home NEWS Local News MPs kick off nationwide public hearings on Affordable Housing Bill

MPs kick off nationwide public hearings on Affordable Housing Bill

The National Assembly is set to commence public hearings on the Affordable Housing Bill, 2023 this week.

The House through the Departmental Committees on Finance and National Planning and that on Housing, Urban Planning and Public Works, has lined up public meetings to jointly collect views from the public on the Bill across nineteen (19) counties, starting Wednesday 17th January for two weeks.

Channel 1

According to a program placed in the local dailies and other platforms, scheduled hearings will see the legislators visit Narok, Embu, Kisii, Kirinyaga, Homabay, Kiambu, Vihiga, Machakos, Uasin Ngishu and Turkana Counties.

Other devolved units where lawmakers will collect views include Baringo, Nairobi, Wajir, Nakuru, Nyandarua, Tana River, Kilifi, Nairobi and Mombasa Counties.

The Affordable Housing Bill 2023 has already undergone the First Reading. The Bill was born out the need to create a comprehensive framework for the affordable Housing Program following a High Court order that declared the housing levy unconstitutional.

The Affordable Housing Bill sponsored by the Leader of the Majority Party, Kimani Ichung’wah, seeks to provide a legal framework for the establishment of the Affordable Housing Fund, access to affordable housing and to give effect to Article 43(1)(b) of the Constitution on the right to accessible and adequate housing.

The Bill further seeks to impose the Affordable Housing Levy to finance the provision of affordable housing and associated social and physical infrastructure.

In anticipation of the scheduled public hearings, Ichungw’a on Wednesday last week sought to clarify on the public hearings following a recent court order by the High Court sitting in Kisumu that had halted the public participation process in a manner prescribed on an earlier advertisement in the dailies.

The public has been requested to send written submissions as opposed to the current methodology where lawmakers will directly go to the public to seek their views on the Bill.

The orders were issued after litigants moved to court soon after the two House Committees in a notice published in the dailies on December 9, 2023, invited the public and stakeholders to submit memoranda on the Bill.

Ichung’wah noted that the orders by the High Court only apply in respect of the conduct of public participation in the manner indicated in the public participation advert issued on December 9, 2023, on submission of memoranda but they did not entirely halt the public participation process.

“The orders did not prohibit Parliament from conducting any other form of public participation including undertaking public hearings across the country on the Bill, or the ordinary stakeholder engagements with key sectors, experts, workers, employers, informal sector, political parties, civil society and marginalized communities etc,” he observed.

Website | + posts
kiico