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CS Wahome commissions multimillion dam project in Kwale

Cabinet Secretary (CS) for Water, Sanitation and Irrigation Alice Wahome has commissioned the Pemba Intake Dam and Water Treatment Works in Kinango sub county of Kwale.

Ms. Wahome said the completion of Pemba Dam is a game changer to the residents of Kinango who were facing perennial water shortage due to water rationing from the Coast Water Services Board.

The Pemba Dam, constructed in the 1980s, is located along the Pemba River and is a concrete gravity weir 4m high and 25-30m long.

She said the sides of the weir were eroded by El Nino rains making impoundment of water impossible hence the need for rehabilitation.

CS Wahome said the intake and treatment works also became dysfunctional and required replacement to restore the system to the design capacity.

Wahome said that the national government would construct over 100 dams across the country and oversee the completion of abandoned water projects in a bid to improve water supply to Kenyans.

She said the water projects will go a long way in increasing access to water and sanitation and improve the health and livelihood of Kenyans especially rural populations.

Ms. Wahome says the Kenya Kwanza administration is putting up water supply infrastructure across the country in order to ensure that no one is left behind in terms of access to clean and safe water and sanitation services.

“The current project involves rehabilitation of the weir and construction of a new treatment plant,” she said adding that the dam benefits approximately 30,000 people or 6,000 households in Kwale and its environs.

The work involves the rehabilitation of dam/weir and spillway, installation of new raw water intake, installation of new raw water pumping station and rising main, construction of new conventional water treatment plant of 3,000m3 per day capacity.

Others are construction of new houses for operators, construction of operation/ lab and chemical stores and associated civil works.

Area Governor Fatuma Achani said the Ministry of Water and Sanitation together with the county government would come up with an amicable solution to ensure that the residents receive sufficient water supply from Kwale Springs that are being managed by Coast Water Board.

Governor Achani described the water project as laudable and that it would go a long way in meeting the yearnings of the local communities.

“We had issues with the Coast Water Board but after the meeting with the Water Cabinet Secretary Hon. Alice Wahome I am sure all the outstanding issues will be resolved soon,” Achani said.

“As we strive to achieve reliable access to safe water for all, we also call upon stakeholders to work together in the protection of our water catchment areas,” she said.

Achani assured that the water project would be well secured and used judiciously, saying the water project would improve both economic and social wellbeing of the people.

“The project came at a time when the county government was keen on improving the sanitation of the people,” she said.

By Hussein Abdullahi

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