The government gets Sh3.6b funding to boost water access

Saturday, September 28th, 2019 00:00 |
Various animals at the waterhole by the restaurant.

The National government has secured Sh3.6 billion from the African Development Bank (ADB) to increase water access across the country.

Under the programme, water infrastructure in key towns will be expanded to help the country achieve 70 per cent coverage by 2022.

Water and Sanitation Cabinet Secretary Simon Chelugui on Friday said over the past year water coverage in the country increased by 1.5 per cent, adding that with full implementation of the project the 70 per cent target shall be realised.

“With devolution, so many small towns are coming up and these are the areas we are targeting under this project to ensure that our people have access to clean water,” he said.

At the same time, controversy surrounds a Sh12 million water pan in Nyando Constituency, Kisumu, after a contractor abandoned the project over non-payment.

A site visit by the Kisumu County Development Implementation Coordination Committee, led by County Commissioner Abdi Hassan, established that works on the Nyaidho/Nyalbiego project initiated by the National government in June 2017 stalled after the contractor abandoned the site owing to non-payment.

National Water Harvesting and Ground Water Exploitation Programme director James Yatich, in a letter, said the ministry has not released the payment as the contractor has not met the minimum requirements to qualify payment and has been advised as much.

Meanwhile, completion of a vital section of the Kisumu-Kakamega dual highway hangs in the balance after a contractor issued a notice of termination of the contract.

An Israeli contractor, SBI International Holdings AG (Kenya), abandoned works on the eight kilometres dual carriage from Kisumu Boys’ junction to Mamboleo Junction last December over alleged unpaid arrears.

SBI has subsequently given Kenya National Highways Authority (KeNHA) a 14-days notice to pay up or they terminate the contractor altogether.

The road project is being jointly financed by the World Bank and the National government at a cost of Sh2.6 billion.

Traders in Kisumu have benefited with Sh8.7 million from the county loans kitty.

Governor Anyang' Nyong’o said the fund is expected to boost small-scale and medium enterprise (SME’s) in the lakeside town. -KNA

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