Nairobi county to ap­prove 50,000 houses

A num­ber of build­ings, mainly in East­lands and Pipe­line, were con­structed with­out per­mis­sion as own­ers had share cer­tifi­cates in­stead of ti­tle deeds as re­quired

The Star (Kenya) - - Front Page - EVANS KIDERO

In early 2015, Nairobi county passed the Reg­u­lar­i­sa­tion of De­vel­op­ments Bill 2015. It pro­vided for the reg­u­lar­i­sa­tion of all unau­tho­rised de­vel­op­ments by Novem­ber 10.

To le­galise this ex­er­cise, it was en­acted in March. It is in­tended to en­hance de­vel­op­ment com­pli­ance and or­der within the city. Amongst its key pro­vi­sions, de­vel­op­ers who built their homes with­out ap­provals were given a grace pe­riod to reg­u­larise their build­ings, fail­ing to which en­force­ment ac­tion would fol­low. Upon reg­u­lar­i­sa­tion, de­vel­op­ers will have req­ui­site doc­u­ments that in­clude oc­cu­pa­tion li­cence which they can use for fur­ther de­vel­op­ment of their in­vest­ments.

Later in Oc­to­ber the same year, I spear­headed the is­suance of 112 ap­proved build­ing plans to de­vel­op­ers of Lucky Sum­mer Es­tate in Pipe­line, Em­bakasi. I had pre­vi­ously en­dorsed the 112 plans through the ap­proval process in an event that was at­tended by de­vel­op­ers and sev­eral po­lit­i­cal lead­ers as part of the ap­prox­i­mately 1,000 de­vel­op­ments in Lucky Sum­mer that were sched­uled for stan­dard­i­s­a­tion.

This process has been rolled out across the city, tar­get­ing crit­i­cal ar­eas that re­quire ur­gent at­ten­tion. More than 50,000 build­ings have not been ap­proved, yet they are oc­cu­pied. A num­ber of these build­ings, mainly in the East­lands and Pipe­line ar­eas, were con­structed with­out nec­es­sary ap­provals as own­ers had share cer­tifi­cates in­stead of ti­tle deeds.

The ma­jor­ity of these own­ers bought land from land-buy­ing com­pa­nies which is­sued share cer­tifi­cates as proof of own­er­ship. But the le­gal re­quire­ment for prospec­tive de­vel­op­ers be­fore their plans are ap­proved and a de­vel­op­ment per­mit is­sued is a ti­tle deed. Given these de­vel­op­ment vari­ables, my gov­ern­ment will take this ex­er­cise very se­ri­ously to fore­stall ad­verse ef­fects as­so­ci­ated with dis­or­derly ur­ban de­vel­op­ment.

In case of un­ap­proved build­ings, the county will eval­u­ate whether they meet min­i­mum hab­it­able stan­dards, in­clud­ing struc­tural in­tegrity. Fur­ther, if you bought land in which sub-divi­sion was never ap­proved, you will be re­quired to bring the de­vel­op­ment scheme-plan for us to check if it meets ba­sic plan­ning stan­dards such as roads, stormwa­ter drainage, util­ity wayleaves, open spa­ces and street light­ing. We have set up a fully func­tional Reg­u­lar­i­sa­tion Cen­tre at the Lady Northey Nurs­ery School, State House Av­enue. Some de­vel­op­ers have taken ad­van­tage of this ini­tia­tive. It will close on Novem­ber 10.

County of­fi­cers from the Plan­ning and Lands de­part­ments are ready to as­sist in fast-track­ing the process at Ardhi House in pro­cess­ing and is­suance of ti­tles to gen­uine plot own­ers. We also take cog­ni­sance of the fact that the ap­proval process has pro­vided a plat­form to en­gage de­vel­op­ers and other stake­hold­ers in a more proac­tive man­ner as op­posed to the pre­vi­ous re­ac­tive way of deal­ing with unau­tho­rised de­vel­op­ments. Those build­ing struc­tures which pass the test will be reg­u­larised while those which fall be­low the min­i­mum ac­cept­able cri­te­ria will re­quire their own­ers fix the iden­ti­fied struc­tural de­fects. How­ever, those found to be beyond re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion will be con­demned and de­mol­ished. So far, tan­gi­ble re­sults have been re­alised in places such as Lucky Sum­mer, where about 25 per cent of the built struc­tures have al­ready been ap­proved fol­low­ing an MoU be­tween the county and the Lucky Sum­mer Wel­fare As­so­ci­a­tion. Oth­ers are Em­bakasi Ranch­ing, Nasra 1 and 2, Ka­muthi Farm­ers’ Co­op­er­a­tive So­ci­ety, Lu­mumba Drive Es­tate in Roysambu and Tas­sia 1 and 2. In ad­di­tion, about 5,000 build­ing plans, or 10 per cent of tar­geted struc­tures, have al­ready been sub­mit­ted for eval­u­a­tion and will be ap­proved. Let’s con­tinue work­ing to­gether to se­cure our city de­vel­op­ment.


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