Move and pave way for more houses, residents urged - Beaking Kenya News

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Wednesday, 30 December 2020

Move and pave way for more houses, residents urged


The government has urged 360 families in government units in Starehe to move and pave way for the affordable housing program.

Speaking to the Star, Housing Secretary Patrick Bucha said old estates will be flattened before being replaced with high rise apartments.

“The affordable housing identified several areas among them Park Road where we have 1,370 units ready, Shauri Moyo and Starehe‚” Bucha said.

He said residents from Park Road moved, allowing the government to complete the project while starehe residents had moved to court in 2014, protesting government's bid to take over the site.

However, the government won the case.

Bucha said the case had gone all the way to the Ombudsman after residents alleged that they were not given ample time to move.

The tenants who are mostly civil servants have been residing in the low-cost houses for decades paying the government monthly rent of between Sh3,000-Sh5,000.

He said the residents had been a non-payment of rent for three months as they prepared to move out.

The government intends to construct 500, 000 affordable housing units by 2022 to curb shortages.

Starehe Housing Development is envisioned as a mixed-use development with social, common and housing amenities.

The site is approx. 2.3acre with a development potential of 3,000 units of various mixes of one bed,  two bed and three-bed accommodation types.

By Wednesday, 312,857 Kenyans had registered for the affordable housing units under the online platform.

The housing deficit in Kenya stands at two million and continues to grow at a rate of about 200,000 units a year, according to UN-Habitat.

Starehe and Shauri Moyo Residents Association Chairman  Adam Katana, however, said they are contemplating moving to court to prevent their houses from being demolished.

The two estates have been earmarked for development by the government under a private-public partnership.

Katana said they intend to file a fresh case under a certificate of urgency.

“The ministry cannot listen. We have school-going children who need to be given time to do their exams. We have rumours that letters for demolitions have been given out to Shauri Moyo and Kamukunji police stations,” he said.

Katana said it is worrying that the demolitions are coming at a time where there is a pandemic even as schools prepare to reopen on Monday.

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