Hundreds of youths and other stakeholders yesterday took part in the cleaning of Lake Naivasha in a bid to rid this vital water resource of garbage that had become a nightmare to the fisher fork.
During the cleanup exercise Naivasha Sub-County Fisheries Officer Mr. Nicholas Kagundu said they managed to retrieve 50 tonnes of garbage from the lake.
The garbage included tonnes of nets left on the water body by poachers and those that get entangled in the water hyacinth that has invaded the lake. These nets pose a great risk to the fish and the fish that get caught in them eventually die.
The over 2,000 youths drawn from the informal settlements within Naivasha town cleaned debris and other wastes on the shores and on the lake itself using fishing boats.
The exercise was spear-headed by Naivasha Sub-County Commissioner Mr. Mutua Kisilu who said the cleaning exercise began two days ago with the cleaning of the Naivasha town estates and informal settlements.
The youths involved in the exercise were mainly drawn from cohort one of the third phase of National Hygiene Programme (NHP) popularly known as Kazi Mtaani. Over 5,000 youths in Naivasha were recruited into this third phase of the programme and were divided into three cohorts.
The NHP is an Economic Stimulus Programme that aims to provide employment to youths in informal settlements to cushion them against Covid-19 pandemic adverse effects.
The first phase of Kazi Mtaani kicked off in April 2020 as a pilot program and focused on select informal settlements in the eight counties.
Other activities are the expansion of pavements along the footpaths, community sensitization on hygiene, garbage collection and disposal, seedling production and tree planting, and landscaping among other environmental beautification activities.
The people living with disabilities were also targeted in the recruitment process as well as single mothers.
Lake Naivasha is a freshwater lake outside the town of Naivasha in Nakuru County covering an area of 139 square kilometers and is major economic mainstay of Naivasha town supporting a flourishing flower and fishing industries.
It’s also famous for its high population of hippos and flamingos. There are over 1,500 hippos on the lake. The lake is also a bird`s paradise as it is home to over 400 birds of different species.
By Mabel Keya –Shikuku