8 November 2017

Kenya: President, City Fathers Launch Nairobi Plan

President Uhuru Kenyatta on Wednesday discussed with the Nairobi County top leadership a programme aimed at improving the city's social and economic sectors.

The meeting was attended by Governor Mike Mbuvi Sonko, Deputy Governor Polycarp Igathe and County Secretary nominee Peter Kariuki.

Others in the meeting included Cabinet Secretaries Henry Rotich (Treasury), James Macharia (Transport), Eugene Wamalwa (Water), Dr Cleopa Mailu (Health) and Prof Jacob Kaimenyi (Lands).

The programme, between the national and the county governments, will cost billions of shillings.

HOUSING

In a statement, the President said it is expected to significantly improve the livelihoods of Nairobi residents.

Both levels of government agreed that all the relevant State and county departments will realign their procurement plans in the next four weeks to ensure allocations for the implementation of the programme.

The programme will mainly focus on housing and settlement, infrastructure and transport.

It will also see various programmes on energy, water resources, environment and solid waste, youth, women and the disabled started. Land, information and communication technology are also among the sectors to be improved.

Mr Igathe and Tourism CS Najib Balala will co-chair the technical committee of the special task force on Nairobi.

HAWKERS

Meanwhile, Mr Sonko yesterday said the county has identified Mwariro Market as the permanent place for hawkers, who will be relocated from the central business district.

This comes against the backdrop of a statement by the governor last week that the hawkers would be moved this month amid a public outcry over the recent flocking of the small-scale traders into the streets.

Mr Sonko said plans were afoot to transform the market, located in Kariokor, to host most of the hawkers.

"My administration has a comprehensive plan to ensure hawkers' interests are taken care of," said Governor Sonko. "As a long-term measure, my administration has identified Mwariro Market to be transformed into a hawkers' market."

Mr Sonko also said City Hall had set in motion a plan to acquire the Kenya Planters' Cooperative Union (KPCU) building on Haile Selassie Avenue and transform it into a hawkers' market.

He defended his administration against accusations that it had failed to promptly deal with the hawking menace and asked for more time.

The governor said the relocation had to be humane, pointing out that his administration was working to ensure a progressive and humane relocation of hawkers to designated streets and lanes, where they can freely do their businesses without obstructing business owners.

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