• Saturday, May 25, 2024 at 10:08 AM
    Last Update : Tuesday, May 28, 2024 at 8:29 AM

New Housing Project in Mauritania Aims to Eradicate Shantytowns

(AWP) - Souad Aslamhom and her family are among the Mauritanians who were relocated from a shantytown to a new home as part of a government residential project that aims to combat the spread of slums in the capital, Nouakchott.

However, she complains of a lack of basic amenities in her new home, saying, “We are thirsty and without water or electricity. Some have found water and some haven’t. Personally, I need water because we can’t do anything without it. You cannot wash anything. We used to have water, but it was cut off few days ago and we are thirsty and we can’t find anyone to ask.”

Despite expressing his gratitude at being relocated from the Amoud slum area and given land as part of the housing project, recent resident Zaid Ammar, has also been without water and electricity for over four months.

In October 2023, the Mauritanian government launched the “New Life” project in the far south of the capital to eliminate slums. Thousands of families were relocated to the development. New schools, roads and basic services were established to serve the new residents and land was also granted to them within the project.

According to Mohammed Walid Ahmed Salem, Coordinator of Slum Restructuring at the Mauritanian Urban Development Agency, work on the project began in 2020 with the aim of eradicating 28 illegally inhabited slums in Nouakchott.

Salem said, “This project includes the development of 450 hectares in Sector 22 in Toujounine district, after which the necessary infrastructure was built to relocate the citizens. We built 5 schools and constructed 8.5 kilometres of paved roads, 15 kilometres of reinforced roads, a health centre, points for selling subsidized goods, a public square, and a police station to maintain security.”