Stone miners and sand harvesters in Murang’a County are slated to benefit hugely from the government’s programme on the construction of affordable houses.
The Principal Secretary for Mining, Elijah Mwangi, has noted that the artisanal miners are currently being registered through Saccos’ so as to benefit from the programme.
The PS, who was speaking in Murang’a town on Tuesday, revealed that his department has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Ministry of Housing, which will see the artisanal miners in the county deliver about 60 per cent of construction materials to the programme.
Mwangi, however, pointed out that for the miners to be considered in the programme, they must be members of cooperative societies and acknowledged that they had already registered two Saccos.
“Our target is to have 10 cooperative societies for artisanal miners. Now two are already registered, and we hope that before the end of this year, the remaining eight Saccos will be registered.
“Once in the Sacco, the miners will be considered to supply materials, including sand and construction stones, for the building of affordable houses.” added the PS.
Construction of affordable housing is earmarked to commence before the end of the year, with the Ministry of Housing already fencing off the site at Makenji area, Kandara Sub County, where the house units will be constructed.
Mwangi noted that Murang’a is endowed with many quarries and sources of sand, which can adequately supply materials for the construction of affordable houses.
“The quarries in Murang’a can produce the stones and sand needed to build the affordable housing units, and that’s why we are determined to ensure the artisanal miners benefit fully from the programme,” she added.
Mwangi called on the County Government of Murang’a to facilitate the registration of artisanal miners Saccos before the closure of the year so as to enable them to be considered as suppliers for construction materials.
“I also call upon those engaged in stone and sand mining to register with Saccos so as to benefit from the government’s programme of providing affordable housing to Kenyans.” He added.
By Bernard Munyao