Frontier Counties Development Council (FCDC) CEO Simba Guleid has called for better ways in dealing with drought and water challenges in the Northern region.
Speaking today during the inspection of a water project at Iftin in Garissa Township, Guleid said that while there have been perennial water challenges in the region, a lot of water has been lost through flooding and the rest flowing out through River Tana.
The project, which is an underground water borehole of about 35 meters deep was allocated about 7.5 million dollars and is expected to serve over 30,000 households in Garissa Township.
“We are undertaking an assessment for establishment of regional water master-plan entailing how we can tailor-make the water solutions in each county,” Guleid said
“We can have ways of harvesting the runaway water from rains and the flood water into a water reservoirs and dams or search for underground water,” he added
FCDC serves as a catalyst in promoting, integrating, sustaining peace and socio-economic development of Northern Kenya. The counties under FCDC are Garissa, Isiolo, Wajir, Mandera, Tana River, Lamu, Marsabit, West Pokot, Turkana and Samburu.
The counties have received an cumulative amount of 35 million dollars for the last 5 years from the Swiss government and other development partners to mitigate water and drought challenges.
The Swiss Ambassador to Kenya Valentin Zellweger said that his government was committed to coming up with viable projects that would bring solutions for water, drought and flooding challenges that have faced the northern region people for the past years.
“We do not only work together with the local authorities and FCDC but also with the private sector. We have companies that are working on these projects with us and that ensures that the project will remain sustainable even if the Swiss government decides to withdraw,” Zellweger said.
The inspection team included Garissa County water CEC Abdi Omar, Garissa Deputy County Commissioner James Ole Kipury among others.
The Northern counties have continuously been hit by natural disasters among them drought and floods. There have also been other challenges including boundary conflicts over scarce pastures and water for livestock and Al-Shabaab invasions.
By Erick Kyalo