Gov’t to pay jobless Nairobi youths KSh 616 per day, for keeping slums clean

Over 10,000 jobless youths from informal settlements are set to receive KSh 616 each on a daily basis from a programme aimed at cushioning them in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic.

This was part of a project spearheaded by the State Department of Housing dubbed Kazi Mtaani to be rolled out across 23 informal settlements countrywide in phases to provide job opportunities.

In Nairobi, 10,600 youths living in Mathare, Kibera, Mukuru and Korogocho slums, as reported by the Daily Nation, were enlisted in the first phase of the programme.

The youth will be expected to undertake daily sanitation and environment preservation duties in their respective settlements during the one month programme

According to the State Department of Housing and Urban Development PS, Charles Hinga, they will be undertaking duties such as access paths and ‘street’ cleaning, fumigation and disinfection.

They will also be involved in garbage collection, bush clearance and drainage unclogging services, among others.

“The payment structure is aimed at providing a daily income and this is why workers will be paid at least twice a week through mobile money transfers,” said Hinga.

He also said that phase one of the programme will deliver wages for the next one month allowing them to meet their economic needs.

He said the project was conceptualized to provide social relief by providing jobs and facilitating hygiene interventions to help contain the COVID-19 pandemic in informal urban settlements.

This was geared at integrating jobless Kenyans in urban hygiene and sanitation works across 23 informal settlements.

“The programme provides opportunities for citizens above the age of 18 of all genders provided they reside in the target informal settlements,” he said

“The focus is on putting people back to work in the short-term as a measure to alleviate the economic impact of the pandemic within informal settlements,” he added.

The PS pointed out that the Kazi Mtaani National Hygiene Programme (NHP) initiative is an extended public works project (EPWP).

It is aimed at providing employment and daily wages for low-income workers living in informal settlements while improving infrastructure and service delivery within informal settlements.

The first phase of the NHP program will also focus on informal settlements in the counties of Mombasa, Kiambu, Nakuru, Kisumu, Kilifi, Kwale and Mandera.

This will see the enlisting of 26, 148 Kenyans living in informal settlements to undertake rapid environment improvements and sanitation management.

“These counties have seen the first instances of COVID-19 and have been affected by the cessation of movement policy initiated to contain the spread of the virus,” said the PS.

“The containment strategies have affected economic activity, making it difficult for those reliant on daily work to meet their basic needs,” added the PS.

Alongside the economic stimulus, the NHP will also deliver improved services and environment for 27 settlements in 8 counties including Nairobi, Mombasa, Kiambu and Kisumu.

Nairobi’s Mukuru slums within South B Division in Starehe Sub-county is among beneficiaries of the programme after getting a new facelift from youths.

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