Residents of Taita Taveta County have celebrated the efforts of H.E. Governor Granton Samboja in prioritising a boosted water supply in the region.
This is after the County Boss commissioned 3 water projects: Kiziki, Shate and Mlawa in Wundanyi Sub-County in line with the functions of devolution, bringing essential services closer to the people at the community grassroots levels.
Interacting with residents, Governor heard from the people how he has shown passion in boosting water supply in the County as these projects targeted populations that previously did not have access to piped water since independence.
“ We used to walk as far as 10 km of mountainous terrain to fetch water. We can use the water for agricultural activities and domestic purposes. Now we can go to salons as previously we could not. We did not need to get our hair done because we carried water on our heads, “ mother of 4 Rael Salim, 59, a beneficiary of Mlawa Water Project said.
Still at Mlawa Water Project, marking the climax of the commissioning activities, the County Boss noted how residents did not need to fetch water from River Mlawa.
Governor was delighted how the water project directly benefits a primary school.
“ Further, the communal water point at lwalenyi and Mlawa targets to benefit 500 households,” he said.
For the Kiziki Water Project targeting 500 households, it is also a relief as the residents did not experience the comfort of having piped water.
“ I am content with Governor Samboja’s administration as he has quenched our thirst. He has responded to our pressing need of having water near to us. We will no longer have to trek 4 km of steep hills to get water. Rainwater was not reliable and the seasonal rivers we depended on dried up during drought seasons, “ Grace Sau, 54, mother of 7 noted.
Alfonse Mwandoe, 51, Chairman Kiziki said this project is a first since independence.
“ Water was an expensive affair. 4 jerry cans of water cost Ksh 100. We don’t have to incur such costs,” Mr Mwandoe.
Meanwhile, Shate Water Project targets 300 households with its source being Wesu springs.
The project that has 2 communal water points reduces the trekking distance to get this precious commodity.
John Maghanga Mwakireti,38, said,” Water is now close to us. It will fulfil my drive in dairy farming. “
29-year-old Clemence Zakaya mother of 2 has never seen such a project.
“ I will increase my vegetable and dairy farming activities, “ she said.
Governor remarked how water is a vital ingredient in sustainable development as this boosts high levels of health, agriculture, industrialisation among other important pillars of the economy.
County Executive Committee Member CECM in charge of Water, Environment, Sanitation, Climate Change and Natural Resources Esther Mwanyumba said the projects align with Sustainable Development Goal SDG 6 which is about clean water and sanitation for all.
Members of County Assembly MCAs present Paul Waweru- Marungu Ward, Steven Mcharo- Wundanyi-Mbale Ward, Nominated MCA Jackson Mwagharo and County Chief Officer CCO Silvanus Mwakoma appreciated the Governor’s efforts for bringing tapped water for the first time in the areas of Kiziki, Shate and Mlawa.
Governor who donated Ksh 50,000 to the Mlawa women group to boost their economic activities also advised that water metres can be provided through a community-friendly payment plan.
“ Gone will be the days when leaders slyly use water as a campaign tool. Issues of water need not be politicised. We can see these services being brought at the people’s doorsteps, “ the County Boss concluded.