The Laikipia Governor, Nderitu Muriithi has lashed out at individuals using the coronavirus pandemic to dodge responsibilities of paying previously accumulated water bills saying only the vulnerable groups would be exempted.
While reacting to complaints of hiked water tariffs in the county, the Governor accused some individuals trying to escape with unpaid bills citing harsh times during the pandemic of fueling the criticisms.
The county boss who was speaking to the media outside his Nyahururu town office on Friday noted that it was the mandate of the Water Services Regulatory Board (Wasreb) to regulate the amounts paid on water per unit.
“There are some individuals who are trying to use this problem to evade their responsibilities for paying bills. I have one particular individual who owes the water company Sh75,000,” he said.
“Those claiming disconnection of water supply are those who previously owed the water company huge amounts as ordinary household cannot have a water bill amounting to thousands,” noted Muriithi.
Muriithi added that his administration was ensuring delivery of water to all public places and vulnerable areas without charging.
Early this year, the Nyahururu Water and Sanitation Company (Nyahuwasco) increased water tariff to consumers as the firm sought money to pay Sh.200 million loan borrowed from African Development Bank (AFDB) in 2013 that was due for payment.
The Company’s finance manager, David Mugai confirmed that the need to get money for repayment of the loan that now stands at about Sh.300 million was one of the reasons WASREB allowed them to increase the tariffs.
The new charges caught the users unawares saying they were not consulted when the process of reviewing the charges was started.
On Covid-19 response, the Governor said that they had responded to about 90 alert cases so far but none had turned positive to the virus.
He called on county resident to remain cautious and report any suspected case to help curb spread of the diseases.
“We want to encourage everybody to take individual actions to lessen the risk of contracting the diseases to oneself and his family by following set directive on curbing spread,” he said.
By Jesse Mwitwa/Anne Sabuni