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November 16, 2018

Regeneration team misses targets

President Uhuru Kenyatta chairs a meeting of special task force on regenerating the capital city of Nairobi at Harambee House. The county government task force was led by Governor Mike Mbuvi. Photo PSCU
President Uhuru Kenyatta chairs a meeting of special task force on regenerating the capital city of Nairobi at Harambee House. The county government task force was led by Governor Mike Mbuvi. Photo PSCU

The Nairobi regeneration team has yet to meet some of the goals it set six months ago.

The team co-chaired by Governor Mike Sonko and Tourism CS Najib Balala was unveiled in March. It committed to ambitious timelines for the delivery of key services ranging from garbage collection to the launch of a mortgage refinancing company.

On April 14, members of the team told President Uhuru Kenyatta at State House that they would resign if they failed to deliver.

Many projects have not been implemented. Some such as the protection of riparian land got underway with the demolition of illegal structures, but the crackdown seems to have fizzled out.

Yesterday, efforts to get comments from the team were unsuccessful as calls went unanswered.

The team had divided the projects into three, based on timelines. Some were to begin in May, others in July and the rest this month. Some projects have been launched but are yet to be completed.

In May, the team was to buy 39 high-capacity buses to be deployed on the Thika Superhighway. This was expected to help reduce fares by 60 per cent. As yet nothing has been done.

Also proposed was the pilot of car-free days to fix traffic gridlock in the CBD. The team was to stagger working hours for public service employees — 8am to 5pm and 9am to 6pm.

Some 100,000 affordable housing units were to be built. Other projects included training 2,200 youths on life skills to enable them start their own businesses.

The team promised a five-acre permanent exhibition space at ASK grounds for ABT, green economy and smart cities. It was to allocate land and industrial space for the incubation of cottage industries.

A brief from Housing and Urban Development PS Charles Hinga said they would set up more tourism information centres and map out tourist sites to increase city tours.

Automation of bus termini and improving non-motorised travel was listed as a crucial step towards restoring order in the transport sector.

Construction of 2,000 houses along Park Road was to be launched in July. The team was to connect 4,000 homes to water and sewer lines. They were to launch a cashless fare system.

This month, the team was to launch an affordable housing project targeting 500,000 units in Shauri Moyo, Makongeni and Starehe, among other estates.

A 66-bed patient block was to be built and equipped at Mama Lucy Kibaki Hospital. These have yet to start. Construction of five stadiums in Dandora, Ziwani, Kawangware, Woodley and Kangemi was to be launched.

Other projects included street-lighting and power connection targeting 30,000 households. This was to be completed within 180 days.

The team sought to support locally produced materials by ring-fencing procurement for certain categories of materials and supplies. Through the projects, the team hoped to create 200,000 jobs in one year.

 

 

 

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