Kishenyi Dam in Wundanyi has been infested with algae, endangering the lives of thousands of residents.
When KNA visited the dam Thursday, residents interviewed said the dam was also experiencing dropping water and the algae problem adds a new twist to the already dire situation.
“I have never seen this dam this low ever. And while that is a problem we were getting used to due to the raging drought, the green matter (algae) is something that has unsettled us,” said Daniel Mkachala, a 40-year-old farmer from Werugha.
Kishenyi Dam is currently a pale shadow of its former self following the drastically dropping water levels occasioned by the severe drought being witnessed in the area, but it is the widespread blanket of algae that is now giving residents sleepless nights.
Serving a population of around 15,000 people, the dam has been the anchor of hope in Werugha, Wumingu, and Kishushe but that beacon of hope is now slowly slipping from under their feet.
During an assessment visit to the dam, a government delegation led by the County Executive for Water, Environment, Sanitation, Climate Change, and Natural Resources Esther Mwanyumba said plans were underway to address the problem.
“We are aware of the algae problem in Kishenyi Dam and a solution is being sought as we speak. Water samples have been taken to Mombasa to get to the bottom of the problem and chlorination will begin soon,” assured Mwanyumba.
The Kenyan government in Article 43 of the 2010 constitution committed to uphold and protect the right to water and sanitation for all Kenyans.
Consequently, the national government allocated Sh103.5 billion to environmental protection, water and natural resources in the fiscal year 2021/2022, a 0.7 per cent increase from the previous year and an increase of Sh2.55 billion going to water safety, storage, and flood control.
By Arnold Linga Masila