Government says it remains committed to upgrading slums and addressing the 1.5 million housing deficit in the country.
Minister of Housing and Infrastructure Development Ronald Chitotela said urbanization in Zambia grows at 4.3% per annum which entails that 1, 93000 housing units should be built annually.
Mr.Chitotela explained that his Ministry takes cognizant of the fact that the urban poor people have been having challenges to access basic services.
He said this when he officiated at the Slum Dwellers International Southern Africa Hub meeting in Lusaka today.
“Urbanization in Zambia is growing at 4.3% which entails that 1, 93000 housing units per year. We are aware that some people who live in slums have a lot of challenges which we are going to address. Urban poor people have been having challenges to access basic services. Starting next year we will be building 10 houses per year for the aged people in the country,” he said.
Mr.Chitotela said going forward government will continue to partner with other stakeholders in upgrading the slums.
He cited Zambia Homeless and Poor People’s Federation (ZHPPF) as some of the key stakeholders that are partnering with government in addressing this task.
Meanwhile, Zambia Homeless and Poor People’s Federation (ZHPPF) representative Veronica Kalulushi said 51% of urban people in Zambia have no access to clean water and sanitation.
Ms.Katulushi said in order to complement government’s efforts in reducing the slums challenges her federation has so far constructed 587 houses in the country.
She further disclosed that through partnering with other stakeholders ZHPPF has sourced for over K2 million which is sitting in the account meant for slum upgrades.
And Slum Dwellers international Management Committee Representative Sheilla Magara such the meetings are a good platform in raising the awareness about the existence of slums.