Public Participation Drives Kenya Informal Settlement Improvement Project Forward in Nakuru County

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The Department of Housing and Urban Development recently held a public participation exercise in Kapkures Settlement in Nakuru Town West and Kiratina Settlement in Nakuru East Sub-county to collect views and preferences from the community regarding the Kenya Informal Settlement Improvement Project (KISIP). This exercise aimed to ensure inclusivity and a sense of ownership among the communities involved. The projects identified by the communities are expected to play a catalytic role in improving the socio-economic aspects of these informal and low-income settlements.

During the engagement, community members selected their Settlement Executive Committee (SEC) and Grievance Redress Committee (GRC) representatives to address issues related to the project. This inclusive approach ensures that the voices of the residents are heard and that their concerns are adequately represented, fostering a collaborative environment where community needs are prioritized.

Speaking at the meeting, Martin Gicinga from the office of the Governor expressed the support and commitment of H.E. Governor Susan Kihika in fast-tracking the implementation of the project and ensuring quality work. This commitment from the highest levels of county leadership underscores the importance of KISIP and its potential impact on the lives of Nakuru County residents. The Governor’s backing is crucial for the project’s success, ensuring that it receives the necessary resources and attention.

Also present at the meeting were Ms. Jane Muriuki, County KISIP Coordinator; John Kamau, Chief Housing Officer; Francis Njoroge, Political Advisor; Ward Administrator Lydia Waweru; and a representative of the MCA. Their presence highlights the multi-stakeholder approach taken in implementing KISIP, ensuring that various perspectives and expertise are brought to the table.

The benefits of KISIP to the people of Nakuru County are manifold. By focusing on the improvement of informal settlements, the project aims to enhance living conditions for thousands of residents. This includes better housing, improved infrastructure, and enhanced access to basic services such as water and sanitation. Such improvements are expected to have a significant positive impact on public health, reducing the incidence of waterborne diseases and other health issues associated with inadequate living conditions.

Furthermore, the project will boost the local economy by creating job opportunities during the construction and implementation phases. Improved infrastructure will also facilitate better access to markets and services, enhancing the economic prospects of the residents. Additionally, the sense of ownership and involvement fostered by the public participation exercise will empower community members, giving them a stake in the development of their neighborhoods.

The establishment of the SEC and GRC ensures that the community has direct channels to address any grievances or issues that arise during the project’s implementation. This not only promotes transparency and accountability but also ensures that the project remains responsive to the needs and concerns of the residents.

The public participation exercise for KISIP marks a significant step towards improving the socio-economic conditions of informal settlements in Nakuru County. With strong support from county leadership and active involvement from the community, the project is poised to bring lasting benefits, transforming these settlements into vibrant, healthy, and economically viable communities. The commitment to inclusivity, quality, and responsiveness will ensure that the benefits of KISIP are felt widely, contributing to the overall development and prosperity of Nakuru County.

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