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Maragua-4 Dam to benefit Murang’a residents

The initial designs of the proposed Sh. 42 Billion Maragua-4 dam will be changed so as to ensure Murang’a residents benefit from water from the reservoir, Water Cabinet Secretary Alice Wahome has said.

Wahome, who spoke during her recent visit to Muranga, observed that initially the dam to be constructed at the upper zone of Murang’a at the borders of Kigumo and Kahuro sub-counties was meant to supply water to Nairobi City County.

She explained that with the new design, the supply of 180, 000 cubic meters of water on a daily basis from the dam will be divided equally among residents in Nairobi and Murang’a counties.

Wahome revealed that new design plans are almost done to ensure that especially lower parts of Muranga, which experience minimal rains, will greatly benefit from water from the dam.

Construction of the mega dam, expected to commence before the closure of this year, will be a second reservoir in Murang’a to supply water to Nairobi and its environs after the Ndakaini dam, which is in Gatanga constituency.

“With new plans, the Maragua-4 dam, whose construction is about to start, will benefit residents of Murang’a and those in Nairobi equally. This will not be like the case of Ndakaini Dam, which supplies Nairobi with more than 80 per cent water,” observed the water CS.

Once complete, Wahome said the dam will supply water to Kahuro, Kiharu, Maragua, Kandara, Kigumo, and parts of Gatanga sub-counties.

“Due to their topographical location, Kangema and Mathioya sub-counties will not benefit from the dam, but there are other water projects planned to increase water coverage in the two sub-counties,” she added.

The last regime constructed a Sh. 800 million Maragua-2 dam in the upper parts of the sub-county to supply parts of Murang’a south sub-county with water.

Two local water companies have been disagreeing on which firm is supposed to utilize water from the dam and supply it to the locals, a matter currently being solved by the county administration.

Meanwhile, the Water CS mentioned other interventions aimed at increasing water coverage in the county, saying that in the current financial years, funds have been allocated to rehabilitate some non-functioning boreholes.

“I had a discussion with local legislators about giving a list of boreholes in their areas that have water but are not functioning. The boreholes are set to be rehabilitated by cleaning and installing solar panels to provide power instead of using electricity, which is expensive,” she said, adding that drilling of new boreholes will be done after the rehabilitation of existing boreholes is done.

To increase food production, the CS noted that each of the seven constituencies is slated to get an irrigation project.

There are ongoing irrigation projects in Kiharu, Kangema, Gatanga, and Kandara which have stalled due to lack of funds, but from this financial year, money will be channeled to facilitate their completion.

“The remaining constituencies of Mathioya, Kigumo, and Maragua are slated to get irrigation projects to boost food production,” added Wahome.

By Bernard Munyao

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