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BOOST FOR BIG FOUR AGENDA

UN-Habitat Assembly to discuss affordable housing in Nairobi

'The timing could not have come at a better time as the event coincides with the government's Big Four Agenda'

In Summary

• More than 2,000 delegates expected at the assembly to be opened by President Uhuru Kenyatta.

• The conference is a big boost to Kenya's housing agenda. 

Delegates at a past UN habitat meeting at the UN headquarters in Gigiri. /FILE
Delegates at a past UN habitat meeting at the UN headquarters in Gigiri. /FILE

Affordable housing is among key urban issues for discussion during the United Nations Habitat Assembly meeting in Nairobi at the end of the month. 

"The timing could not have come at a better time as the event coincides with the government's Big Four Agenda," Transport Cabinet Secretary James Macharia said.

"We are privileged as a country to have a global event be aligned to our national agenda." 

 

President Uhuru Kenyatta is expected to open the May 27-31 conference at the UN headquarters in Gigiri. More than 2,000 people are expected to attend.

Macharia said the event was timely as the world is experiencing rapid urbanisation and an acute shortage of affordable and decent housing.

This has led to the growth of slums and informal settlements and overcrowding thus resulting in serious sanitation challenges.

Kenya intends to build 500,000 affordable homes over the next five years under the Affordable Housing Programme.

Delegates will also discuss gender, transport and mobility.

The 193 UN Assembly member states are expected to agree on standards, decide and adopt resolutions on global urbanisation.

UN-Habitat executive director Maimunah Mohd Sharif on Thursday said representatives will discuss urban issues such as public transport, urban safety, garbage collection, adequate and affordable housing, pollution and the effects of natural and man-made disasters.

 

Macharia said that the ministry held talks with the Council of Governors on Wednesday. It was agreed that the county heads would prioritise and support housing projects.

He said that the government was also implementing infrastructural projects to improve the quality of life in Kenya's urban centres through programmes like the Bus Rapid Transport and commuter rail.

(Edited by R.Wamochie)