Kibera, Corruption and Poverty Architecture

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Poverty Architecture

Is it possible to design poverty? Is there a way a government can plan poverty intentionally or unintentionally? Systemic corruption is a fast track way to deliver a poverty architecture. Anyone who doesn’t understand the impact that corruption has on a people, how corruption perpetuates a bad life for a people should take a walk to Kibera’s small centers. Sometimes just hanging out in Java’s, Urban eatery, going for holiday in Mombasa and out of the country can insulate from the suffering that bad politics can bring to a people.A visit to Makongeni, Kambi muru, Kianda, Soweto East, Lindi, Mashimoni, Laini Saba, Olympic, Karanja, Makina, woodley, Fort Jesus and all other small centers of Kibera is a sobering reminder.. A reminder of how it is possible to to design poverty in lives and destines of a whole generation and many more.

About Kibera and The slum side of Nairobi.

Kibera reportedly houses 250,000 people of Kenya’s 2.5 million slum dwellers. 6 out of 10 Nairobians live in slums. Kibera houses 1 in 10 of these people that live in slums.Only 20% of these people access electricity and an average of eight people live in houses that are as small as 16 square metres.An average 2 bedroom house is about 75 sqm and houses about 4 to 5 people.

Corruption and its role in poverty architecture

Several reports put money lost in GoldbenBerg and Anglo leasing alone beyond Kes 200B. Just to consider these 2 scandals, let alone those of subequent governments and those not documented and never known, If Kes 40 Billion is missing or is spent badly, this money can generate lots of homes for many people. Assuming a 40sqm of a house is enough for a family (always more then enough in countries like China), at a cost of 40K per sqm, we would get 125,000 homes in Kibera for this amount of money. If an average family is 5, this is 625,000 people housed. Now a house has been proven to generate 9X more in GDP. In other words just from these two scandals, excluding interest, it is possible to house more than 2.5X the people that are in Kibera today and well over 25% of the people in Nairobi’s slums.

Why are we poor? Why havent Kenya’s fortunes matched those of Hong Kong and Singapore? Does rule of law play a role? YES. Does bad politics play a bad role? YES. Can good politics cure corruption,not completely. But for sure, good politics, respect rule of law, good business climate is a GOOD pillars for delivering people out of poverty. Corruption is the cancer that eats the good things out of good progress. It treatens rule of law, perpetuates injustice, destroys a good business climate, increases unemployment and insecurity. A corrupt government will find it very hard to inspire young generation on nation building at least not when 52 MP’s got NYS contracts and billions of shillings continue to be lost each year…Money that could house urban poor, deliver services to rural poor and make Kenya an agent in change.Bad things happen when very good people dont say anything. Lets say no. Please share

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