Kibera upgrading project full of contradictions

Some of those moved from the informal settlements in Kibera to better houses rent them out and build new shanties, making a mockery of the government’s efforts to improve their living conditions. PHOTO | LUKORITO JONES |

What you need to know:

  • Ironically, Ms Mugure says the living conditions in her current house are not much different from the life she and her neighbours led in the Soweto East slums. In fact, the second-hand clothes’ dealer says she dearly misses the way of life in the slum.
  • “What we are striving for is to move the slum residents from living below the poverty line to a Nairobi upper middle-class life,” says Mr. Sikuku “The project was funded almost entirely by the Kenya government at a cost of 3.26 billion,” he says.
  • “We urge private investors to join us in offering decent affordable housing to Kenya’s slum population. It might seem like a pipe dream today, but a day is coming when slums will be history in Kenya,” Mr Sikuku says.

The road to Ms Vivian Mugure’s home is long and treacherous. We hop over huge pools of raw sewage, pass by the dilapidated, rusting corrugated iron shanties, and dash through narrow, muddy footpaths.

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