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Kiambu to build 7,000 housing units to replace old JAMOFASTA houses.

Governor Ferdinand Waititu addressing Thika resident at Starehe Grounds on Wednesday during the official launch of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Thika Sub-County.

Kiambu County Government will put up about 7,000 housing units to replace the old JAMOFASTA houses in a bid to boost the national government’s ambitious plan to build one million affordable housing units within the next five years.

This was revealed by Governor Ferdinand Waititu on Wednesday during the official launch of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Thika Sub-County at Starehe Grounds (Butuu) Thika.

The estates affected are Ofafa, Jamhuri, Starehe and Ziwani which will be demolished to pave way to the construction of 10-storey apartments and flats.

A similar programme will be administered in Ruiru and Kiambu towns.

“We have already invited tenders from private investors who wish to put up affordable housing units in the project. Priority to own these houses will be given to the current occupants who each will be given one unit for free and the rest be sold to other residents at subsidised prices,” said Waititu.

Waititu also said that the current compound that hosts the ‘Government Quarters’ opposite the Thika Stadium will be converted into a business park once his government completes the construction of the 43 housing units at the current county government Depot (behind Thika Town Hall).

“We have set aside about KES. 30million for the project. Once complete, we shall transfer all those living at government quarters to the new houses at Depot and convert the land into a business hub,” he said.

The county government will within the next two months procure a 2-acre piece of land in Makongeni along the Thika-Garissa Highway to construct a matatu terminus in a bid to decongest the highway especially near the Post office. Notwithstanding, the Madaraka Market is in the process of being reconstructed into a modern-storey facility in a programme funded by both the county government and the World Bank.

The governor added that Thika was among the 6 sub-counties in Kiambu to benefit from the $1 billion Kenyan Support Programme funded by the World Bank to upgrade towns to municipalities in all the 45 counties.

The towns will get grants amounting to millions of dollars annually for institutional and capacity building for their officers on the ground to start the upgrade. The money will also be used in upgrading amenities to the standards requirement set by the World Bank.

The World Bank programme, he said, will run up to 2023.

“Before the end of this month (June 2018), I am going to convene a public meeting where we shall launch the charter for Thika Municipality and constitute a board that will run the affairs of the municipality under a manager appointed by the governor,” explained Waititu.

On the emotive issue of the Del Monte company land, the governor said that they have had a very fruitful discussion with the management of the company and had agreed that the company to surrender about 1,000 of unused land to the county that will be used for future expansion plans for Thika town.

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