Saturday, May 18, 2024
Home > Counties > Baringo > Construction of 800 Affordable housing units in Kabarnet to commence in February

Construction of 800 Affordable housing units in Kabarnet to commence in February

The Baringo County government will roll out the construction of 800 affordable housing units in the Sironoi area of Baringo Central Sub County, beginning in February this year.

Deputy Governor Eng Felix Maiyo said they have already identified seven acres of land for the project which will also accommodate other critical social and physical infrastructure.

Eng Maiyo disclosed that the contractor will be on site early next month to embark on the construction works.

The deputy county boss said this during a public participation forum on the affordable housing bill (National Assembly Bill No.75 of 2023) chaired by the National Assembly Departmental Committee on Finance, National Planning and Housing Chairperson Kimani Kuria at Kenya School of Government (KSG), Baringo campus.

In the daylong meeting attended by residents from all the sub-counties, Eng Maiyo raised concerns that as a county government, they were in the dark over how the donated land would be compensated and the sharing formula on the revenue that would accrue from the sale of the housing units once completed.

“As county government, we have two concerns to raise about this Affordable Housing project. First is clarity on reimbursement of the land sourced for the units. The National government has not come out clearly on how the land will be compensated, and secondly, is the sharing formula on the revenue that will accrue from the sale of the housing units upon completion,” the Deputy Governor said.

Other members of the parliamentary departmental committee who attended the public participation included MPs Joseph Makilap (Baringo North), Dr John Ariko Namoit (Turkana South), Paul Biego (Chesumei), Joseph Oyula (Butula) and David Mboni (Kitui Rural) and area county commissioner Stephen Kutwa.

County Commissioner Kutwa said construction works for another 160 units for Kabarnet which will also include a kindergarten and social hall will commence soon while the Marigat site where 240 units are to be put up has already been advertised while the Eldama Ravine site is at the design stage.

During the public hearing, a cross-section of Baringo residents expressed disappointment that they will not be able to raise the ten percent deposit on the application required by the government for affordable housing units.

The locals, consisting of jua kali artisans, mama mbogas, and boda boda operators, asked the government to lower the percentage deposit to less than five percent for the social housing units arguing that their monthly incomes cannot even reach Sh20 000.

“The interest rate of three percent charged for the housing units is beyond our reach. We fear that we might default in servicing the loans because of our meager incomes. If the government really meant good for the hustlers, then the percentage on deposits and interest rate should be reduced considerably,” the participants argued.

Bartabwa MCA David Sitoi said there is a need to have the bill indicate the specific percentages to be paid by different groups fo

A section of stakeholders who participated in a public participation forum on the Housing Levy Bill convened on Tuesday at Kenya School of Government Baringo campus by the Parliamentary Committee on Finance, National Planning and Housing chaired by Kimani Kuria.
Photo by Joshua Kibe

r them to benefit from the housing project.

Sitoi suggested that those earning lesser income be given the liberty to pay five percent so that they are not challenged in raising the deposits.

His sentiments were supported by Kenya Secondary Heads Association, Baringo Branch Secretary Silvano Cheptarus who stated that if the bill is not amended it will impact negatively on non-teaching staff in schools who are earning lower salaries compared to other officials.

Cheptarus said the bill is not sensitive to lower cadres of staff and might prove challenging for them to raise the 10 percent to purchase the units.

Kenya County government worker’s union chair Jonathan Lopez said the mandatory contributions by all employees payable monthly at a rate of 1.5 percent be deducted from the basic salary.

Lopez argued that it is not fair to deduct a 1.5 percent gross monthly salary from employees in all cadres since it favors those earning higher salaries.

Molo MP Kimani Kuria promised that the views of Baringo residents have been well captured in a report that will represent all the aspirations of the locals.

Kuria assured the participants that the money collected from the housing levy kitty is safe and will be utilized solely for its intended purpose of establishing affordable housing units for Kenyans.

By Joshua Kibe and Benson Kelio

Leave a Reply