In an ambitious move to address Kenya’s housing crisis, President William Ruto announced a nationwide housing initiative, with government employees taking the lead by contributing a portion of their salaries. This transformative plan will be funded by mandatory salary deductions from the country’s civil servants, who are expected to invest 3% of their income in the project to ultimately become homeowners.
The announcement was made during a church service at the Friends Church (Quakers) in Donholm, Nairobi, with both President Ruto and Prime Cabinet Secretary Musalia Mudavadi in attendance. The groundbreaking plan will be initially propelled by the approximately 700,000 government employees, who will be required to save 3% of their salaries each month to fund the project. The law will also mandate employers to match the 3% employee contribution.
President Ruto expressed optimism about the program, committing the government to match employee contributions with an additional 3% of their salary each month. “For every employee who will set aside their salary to cater for this housing project, we as the government will give them another 3% of their salary so that we can create a fund that will assist the people of Kenya to own homes,” he said.
In addressing the current housing situation, Ruto pointed out that Kenya has only 40,000 mortgages, a far cry from the 2 million needed to accommodate its citizens adequately. The President recently presided over the launch of the KSh 13 billion Starehe affordable housing project, which is set to be executed by Suleiman Shahbal, a close ally of ODM leader Raila Odinga and East African Legislative Assembly Member of Parliament (EALA MP). The venture, named Starehe Point, is a collaboration between GulfCap Real Estate, owned by Shahbal, and the National Government.
During his speech, President Ruto praised Shahbal’s investment in Kenya, noting that he prioritized the nation’s development over purchasing properties abroad. With this groundbreaking housing initiative, Ruto aims to bridge the housing gap and empower Kenyans to achieve homeownership.