BUJUMBURA June 13th (ABP) – The Cabinet Members meeting on Wednesday June 7, 2023 under the chairmanship of Burundi Head of State Evariste Ndayishimiye, adopted the project to build 6,600 social housing apartments on the Kizingwe-Bihara and Socarti sites, according to the press release issued after the meeting.
That project, which was presented by the Minister in charge of Infrastructure, provides for the construction of 5,000 apartments on the Kizingwe-Bihara site instead of housing 600 buyers of plots only. The site has an area of 300 ha, 53% goes to the owners of the land, while the 47% remains with the State.
As for the Socarti site, 1,600 social housing apartments will be erected there. The cost of those accommodations will differ according to the categories of these apartments, as specified in the press release.
Given the location of the Kizingwe-Bihara site, the press release continues to say, the Cabinet Members recommend considering the necessary measures so that the waters coming from that site cannot cause flooding and carry away the houses built in the Nyabugete quarter. Moreover, given the mentality of Burundians to live in individual dwellings, it will be necessary to sensitize the occupants of the apartments on cleanliness and take the necessary support measures.
Indeed, the social housing construction project was initiated after having observed for a long time a frantic race for the acquisition of plots, via a trade that had become very speculative throughout the country, due to the fact that the land to be built granted by the public services can no longer meet the demand, specifies the same press release.
The government of Burundi pointed out through the press release that even households with a relatively high standing are settling in unserviced outlying neighborhoods for land speculation. The situation is more worrying in the city of Bujumbura and its surroundings, with a threat of disappearance of agricultural areas in the Imbo plain.
To overcome this situation, the government of Burundi has thought of a strategy with a new housing policy which aims to make viable land available, to favor high-rise buildings and the hire-purchase system in order to reduce financial stress of acquirers, to channel financing through a system sufficiently controlled by the Central Bank. That new policy also aims to clearly distinguish the roles of the various actors, namely the State, purchasers, financiers, construction companies, network managers and to support the new policy by setting up a legal framework and regulations required.
The policy was adopted by the Cabinet Members with observations and recommendations focusing, among other things, on the implementation of this policy by launching the first social housing projects as quickly as possible, mobilizing investors and reimbursement guarantees, collaboration with REGIDESO so that the newly built neighborhoods have water and electricity in sufficient quantity and the support of the Bujumbura City Council in waste collection.