NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 13 – President Uhuru Kenyatta on Tuesday launched projects to upgrade Mukuru kwa Njenga, Korogocho and Mathare informal settlements in Nairobi County with an assurance that the programme will be extended to all counties.
President Kenyatta said the youth empowerment programmes similar to the one initiated in Kibera last year would engage youth in activities that would impact positively on their lives.
Under the programme, the Government will engage 3,500 youths in each of the three settlements to be trained by National Youth Service Personnel on SACCOs to sustain them in the future, the President said.
The programme entails clean-up of informal settlements, opening-up of roads, street lighting, construction of medical clinics and police posts to ensure security of the residents.
The President said clean-up of the settlements would guarantee residents clean environments to engage in lawful activities.
He spoke at Kwa Njenga primary school grounds, Korogocho grounds and Kiboro grounds respectively while launching the programme.
“As Government, we are committed to ensuring equitable development in informal settlements and all other parts of the country,” the President said.
The president regretted that informal settlements that accommodate 75 per cent of residents of urban areas, lacked social amenities including roads, hospitals and sewerage systems.
He said income generating programmes will occupy youth and ensure they do not engage in unlawful activities.
“It is an unfortunate fact that in the past, development has been skewed in favour of areas where the rich live. My Government is addressing the situation, ” he added.
The President said, all Kenyans irrespective of their places of domicile have a right to services and quality development that will transform their lives.
He reminded Kenyans that development programmes lined up by the Government was only possible when Kenyans remained.
He said the national and county governments will continue to collaborate together to improve the living conditions of inhabitants in Nairobi and other counties.
“Kenyans exercised their democratic rights by voting for leaders of their choice in the last elections. But we now need to rise above party politics and work together to deliver quality service,” he said.
On substandard buildings that collapse, President Kenyatta warned developers and contractors who fail to follow the law that they will be prosecuted.
President Kenyatta said the Government will not sit and watch innocent lives being lost in the hands of a few greedy plot owners, contractors and corrupt county officials.
Devolution Cabinet Secretary Anne Waiguru said adequate equipment and manpower have been deployed for timely completion of the projects undertaken by National Youth Service.
Nairobi Governor Evans Kidero affirmed his commitment to working with the National Government on development and all other matters of national importance.
In attendance were Cabinet Secretaries, Hassan Wario, James Macharia, Michael Kamau, Charity Ngilu, Judy Wakhungu and Felix Koskei.