Housing Principal Secretary Charles Hinga on Sunday clarified how the government will manage title deed ownership for public land as the government carries on with its ambitious Affordable Housing project.
PS Hinga explained that the government would retain the original title deeds even as it continues to invite private developers to build units under the programme.
He further explained that counties and other organisations donating land to the private developers for the programme would still have an element of ownership in the program.
“No land is being given to the private developer, we are making land available for development at no cost to you, you get a sectional title, and the government still keeps the mother title,” Hinga clarified.
President William Ruto at the Kibra Affordable Housing Project on November 22, 2023
Hinga was answering questions raised by Jubilee Deputy Organising Secretary Pauline Njoroge who had expressed fears that the national government was unlawfully taking land from devolved units for the project.
“The government gives it (the land) to a private developer for free to build affordable housing. The developer then sells or rents out those houses. How does the public from that county stand to benefit from this land which was initially theirs, but has now been privatized?” Njoroge had asked.
She wondered if this was a way of institutionalising land grabbing in the country.
Hinga urged Kenyans to embrace the project noting that housing was a major issue in the country exacerbated by the high cost of land.
According to the PS, many Kenyans will now be able to afford decent housing due to the government’s plan.
Hinga further argued that the opposition should not criticise President William Ruto’s project as the same initiative was part of Azimio Leader Raila Odinga’s manifesto.
President Ruto’s administration aims to build 1 million affordable housing units by 2027.
One of the ways the program is financed is through the Housing Levy deducted from salaried Kenyans which has since been thrown out by the High Court on grounds of unconstitutionality.
Housing Principal Secretary Charles Hinga speaking to journalists at State House Nairobi on May 24, 2023.