State department for Housing and Urban Development Principal Secretary Charles Hinga Mwaura, has revealed that Sotik town is now qualified to be upgraded to a Municipality status.
Speaking in Bomet, Thursday, during a tour of development projects under Kenya Urban support programme KUSP, Hinga said Sotik will join a total 59 municipalities in Kenya, after it is given its Charter.
Hinga said the move was set to improve the quality of the area in terms services provision that will be overseen by a Board, after the abolition of Mayor position.
He said the Sotik town will then be able to set its own development projects as it will be able to collect and use revenue from the local economy.
The PS said promotion to Municipality status was a way the town will attract funding from partners, including the World Bank.
“We are in talks with the World Bank and we have an assurance that there will be more funding for urban upgrading in the 2023/2024 financial year,” he said.
“This is actually very good because it gives us time to plan on priority areas that need to be done.” Hinga noted.
The PS told the locals to trust the municipality, saying it was one of the main channels of sourcing funding, adding that the Government may not implement planned projects as effective as other partners since the national resource base did not expand as fast as is expected by wanainchi.
“That is why you need to have a meeting on issues that cuts across departments, so as to set priorities because for example, we may be dealing with urban roads but water and electricity will definitely be there for consideration, “he said.
He urged the County Government of Bomet to explore ways of tapping into the private sector capital, terming it as a sure way of winning in terms of improving local revenue base.
Slum upgrading programme, he said, included establishment of modern sewer lines, building of house and accompanying social amenities, including schools and health facilities, projects that, he said, were also set to prevent further degeneration of urban center into slums.
The PS, who visited Bomet open air market, said the Department of Housing would ensure completion of ongoing construction of market stalls, saying the Government aimed at ensuring the dignity of the common traders as they go about the daily business.
Accompanying PS Hinga was the Director of planning and Urban Development, Charles Onyango, among other Housing officials.
By Kipngeno Korir