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Agro-pastoral communities of Northern Kenya launch water synthesis report

As the world celebrated World Water Day on March 22, 2024, the agro-pastoral communities of Northern Kenya marked the event at Sera Park in Kiirua, Meru County, emphasizing the importance of water conservation in fostering peace and stability among communities.

During the event, a significant milestone was marked with the launch of a water synthesis report conducted in Laikipia, Meru, and Isiolo counties.

With the key message, “Where is Our Water Stock,” this report aims to address the critical issue of water scarcity in the region and the need to conserve the precious commodity.

The key goal of the report is to highlight that water is a scarce resource in the region and that collaborative efforts were essential from all stakeholders, including government agencies, farmers, communities, and water users, to safeguard and conserve the resource.

Meru County Executive Committee Member for Water, Irrigation, Environment, Natural Resources, and Climate Change, Eng. Jackson Muthamia said it was the responsibility of every resident within the region to make good use of the resource.

“As the World celebrates World Water Day, let us all recognize that water is a diminishing resource in this region. As the Meru County Government we will work with all stakeholders to ensure this resource is shared, used, and harnessed equitably,” said Mr Muthamia.

Echoing this sentiment, Chief Programmes and Partnerships Officer at the Lewa Wildlife Conservancy John Kinoti said that as custodians of natural resources, it was the responsibility of everyone to protect and conserve water sources for future generations.

“By working together, we can mitigate the effects of water scarcity and contribute to a more peaceful and sustainable future,” he said.

He added, “We have realised that our rainfall, groundwater and surface water data is alarming and that is the reason we are calling on everyone to take collective responsibility to ensure that our plans towards harnessing water is achieved”.

“The responsibility is for everyone and we must account for water so that we can have a better future. We have lost the direction because of over-abstraction, overuse, and failure to follow the laid-out procedure of abstraction and also the utilisation of water,” he added.

“We thank all the stakeholders for their immense support to see that everybody can access some water and we must be able to remain very close to each other,” said Kinoti.

Representing the Water Resource Authority, the Sub Regional Water Resources Manager Taratishu Kinyua affirmed that water is a shared resource that transcends boundaries and jurisdictions.

“Through collaborative efforts and effective water governance, we can address the challenges of water scarcity and promote peace and stability in our region. Through initiatives like the water synthesis report, we can raise awareness and mobilize action towards sustainable water management practice,” said Kinyua.

The World Water Day celebrations provide an opportunity for communities, governments, and organizations to come together and renew their commitment to water conservation and peace-building efforts.

By Dickson Mwiti

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