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Increased water metre theft paralysing supply in Muranga, environs

Murang’a Water and Sanitation Company (Muwasco) is counting losses after increased cases of theft of water metres and vandalism of their infrastructure.

For the past week, more than 20 water metres have been stolen, paralysing water supply to several parts of the company’s area of jurisdiction.

Muwasco Corporate Communications Manager, Mr Jacob Mbuthia, has revealed that the worst-affected areas include Gaitega, Kambwe, Njoguini, Mjini and Kabuta.

He noted that for the last week, every day the company was losing one or two metres, saying the most targeted were metallic ones. “It’s unfortunate the theft of water metres has gone up and we are suspecting the equipment is being stolen and sold to scrap metal dealers,” Mbuthia told KNA.

Theft and vandalism of water infrastructure, Mbuthia revealed, had plunged the company into losses amounting to more than Sh. 1.5 million for the last year, regretting that due to increased vandalism and theft of water equipment, some parts of their area of jurisdiction have been going without water for several days.

“Our team is on ground almost every day, repairing vandalised water pipes and also replacing stolen metres. This has caused the company huge losses,” remarked Mbuthia.

He noted the company is employing a multi-agency approach to curb vandalism of water pipes and theft of metres, adding they have been organising public barazas jointly with national government administrative officers with the aim of sensitising the locals to help protect water infrastructure.

“We are also partnering with officers from the ministry of interior, the police, the county government, and Nyumba Kumi members to help us guard and protect water infrastructure.

“The company is also ready to give rewards to members of the public who will volunteer information leading to the arrest of culprits stealing the metres,” added Mbuthia.

Muwasco currently serves two wards, including Mbiri and Murang’a Township, with plans in place to extend its services to parts of Kambiti, Nginda and Kamahuha wards, which are in Murang’a South Sub County.

Currently, the company has more than 17, 000 customers, with Mbuthia saying by the end of this year they are targeting to connect about 6, 000 people to water.

By Bernard Munyao

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