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AfDB Bank lauds Thwake Dam development project

The African Development Bank (AfDB) has lauded the progress of the designs of three important components of the Thwake Multi-purpose Dam being constructed at the convergence of Athi and Thwake rivers by the China Ghezoubha Group Company (CGGC).

The Bank that is the main contributor in the monies used to construct the dam expressed its satisfaction with the planning, design and development of the key components of water supply and sanitation, hydro power and transmission, and irrigation.

“Constructing a dam of this size will significantly boost the development of this semi-arid region. There is notable progress made in developing designs for hydropower and transmission, and irrigation development downstream. As a bank, we are studying them and committed to fund the project to completion to benefit many people,” said AfDB Acting Director for Water Development and Sanitation Department Mr Osward Chanda.

Chanda said this at the Dam when he visited to establish the progress made. He was accompanied by AfDB Task Manager in charge of Thwake Water and Development Programme, Mr Christopher Mutasa and AfDB Principal Water and Sanitation Specialist, Benson Bumbe.

Currently, the progress made by the CGGC since they started works at the site in 2017 is 62 per cent against 77 per cent elapsed time, with the slowing down being attributed to the covid-19 outbreak that disrupted the works.

However, it is imperative to note that the construction of the dam is expected to be completed before June 2022 when President Uhuru Kenyatta is expected to commission the project.

The dam will be constructed in four phases as follows, construction of the dam, generation of electricity, distribution of water supply to residents with irrigation being the last component in 2023.

Further, the Director revealed that the bank has so far disbursed Sh22 billion to the Ministry of Water and Sanitation for the construction of the dam that would have massive impact especially on the socio-economic on the residents of the region.

“The progress and the impact that the project is already having on social responsibility in the area is impressive. So far, we have had over 100 students in the field of Health and Education attached to the project gain experience, exposure and to learn,” added Chanda.

In the construction of the dam, a total of Sh42 billion will be spent whereby AfDB and the Government of Kenya (GoK) will contribute over Sh32.5 billion and Sh9.85 billion respectively.

The dam is expected to generate 150, 000 cubic meters of clean water per day to supply to over 1.3 million residents and also to Konza Techno City as a result to contribute to elimination of water borne diseases.

On generation of electricity, it is expected that 20 MW would be generated and used to pump water to help in irrigating 100,000 acres of land hence increasing food security.

By Patrick Nyakundi and Ronald Rono

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