Jua Kali Traders working in Chuka town Tharaka Nithi County have asked the State Department of Housing to consider them during the purchase of construction installations that would be used in the Affordable Housing Program (AHP), by distributing the opportunities evenly among the 47 counties.
The appeal comes at a time when the government is planning to acquire 100, 000 doors and 120, 000 windows for the AHP program in Starehe and Shauri Moyo estates, Nairobi.
The items are to be supplied by Jua Kali traders in the country according to the Housing Principal Secretary, Charles Hinga.
The traders said that should the tenders be offered at the national level, they would not be able to benefit from the hugely invested program.
“We urge the government to help us benefit from the tender by availing the jobs at the county level,” said Jameson Muriithi, a Chuka town Jua Kali trader who has worked in the town for 30 years.
The traders said that the even distribution of the opportunities would improve job security and give them a chance to grow, as opposed to the current system whereby only the most networked organizations won tenders.
Affordable Housing Program is among the Big Four Agendas fronted by the Jubilee administration to address inadequate housing in Kenya.
The piloting phase of the program was completed with the establishment of 228 housing units in the Park Road project, whereby only three Nairobi based associations benefited from the lucrative tender for the supply of 7, 000 doors and 8, 400 windows.
By Domenic Ntoogo/Kenneth Marangu