THREE MONTHS LATE

Pangani housing project fails to kick off

County currently clearing the debris left behind after the blocks were brought down.

In Summary

•City Hall to start on the project end of September or October, 2019

•All 48 tenants received Sh600,000 for rent for the next 12 months

A demolished house at Pangani estate by the county government on July 16, 2019
A demolished house at Pangani estate by the county government on July 16, 2019
Image: EEKIEL AMINGA

Despite evicting tenants in the middle of the night almost two months ago, Nairobi County Government is yet to kick off the long awaited affordable housing project in Pangani Estate.

What sits on the ground that used to be home to 48 tenants are remains of the demolished houses.

County Lands and Housing Executive Winfred Gathangu said on Thursday that the county was currently clearing the debris left behind after the blocks were brought down.

"The site is still being cleared and the preliminary preparations are ongoing, and the developer will move in to embark with construction once everything is cleared.

"We are hoping the groundbreaking will happen by the end of this month or the beginning of October," she said.

On July 16, the county hurriedly forced the tenants to move from the houses after a section of the tenants attempted to stop the demolitions failed after a Nairobi court declined to stop the exercise, dismissing a case filed by the residents.

Pangani estate is among seven estates - others being Uhuru Estate, Suna Road, Old Ngara, New Ngara, Jevanjee and Ngong Road Phases One and Two - which have been targeted for redevelopment.

Pangani redevelopment, which is meant to be the pilot, has delayed severally as result of controversy and disputes between the county government and the tenants .

The official ground breaking was meant to happen last year in August but was postponed to December, when it was announced that President Uhuru Kenyatta would launch the project.

In May, it was said that each of the 48 tenants received Sh600,000 to facilitate their rent to wherever they choose to relocate to for the next two years as the groundbreaking was projected to happen in June.

A demolished house at Pangani estate by the county government on July 16, 2019
A demolished house at Pangani estate by the county government on July 16, 2019
Image: EZEKIEL AMINGA
 

The Star had established that some tenants, who had refused to pick their cheques, had come up with fresh demands.

The tenants opposed the date saying the county needs to allocate more time for them to relocate.

They also said the county had failed to give clear information, including a clear road map and time line.

But City Hall claimed some tenants were indifferent and only wanted things done according to their terms.

However, the county agreed and gave them a deadline of August 1, 2019, but ended up being evicted two weeks earlier.

Phase one of the project in Pangani will cost Sh25 billion an land valued at Sh4 billion.

A total of 1,434 units are to be constructed where the 48 tenants, who were evicted, would be given first priority when the houses would be completed.

Each tenant will be allocated a new house, each which costs Sh3 million.

They are to pay for the houses in a 30-year period at a negotiated monthly rent of Sh8,000.

Tecnofin was the developer awarded for the renewal of Pangani estate and SS Malonza as the consultant.