The Ministry of Water and Sanitation in conjunction with the Development Bank of Germany and Lake Victoria South Water Works Development Agency has funded Sh1.02 billion for the expansion of Kimugu Water Supply Project.
The project will see more than 200,000 residents of Kericho benefit with 13 million litres of clean water per day by the end of this year 2021.
The project being one of the key flagships of the President under food and nutrition in the agenda four is now at 66 per cent to completion, according to the project resident engineer Mr Fabian Masinde.
During a site visit by the Presidential Delivery unit (PDU) Director Mr John Karanja and his team to assess the development works at the project, Eng. Masinde said that construction of the structure at Kimugu river intake point was at 95 per cent completion.
He also said other walling at the intake point building was complete, while river protection works (gabions) intake bridge, diversion closure and re-river diversion were also substantially complete and what was remaining was restoring of the site into its original natural habitat by planting of trees and grassing was ongoing.
Eng. Masinde noted that supply of steel pipes of diameter 600 mm for the 3.3 kilometres out of the 7.7 kilometres from the intake point to the treatment works plant has been done.
He further said the remaining section of 4.4 kilometres was yet to be supplied with steel pipes by the supplier as manufactures had raised the purchasing cost of the steel pipes by 71 per cent which altered the costs of procuring the pipes by more than Sh100 million.
Eng. Masinde told the PDU director and his team that they were seeking other alternatives, probably the High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, for the remainder of the section from within the country to control the general cost of the project.
He added that the Project’s main contractors Nanchang Foreign Engineering company JV and Jiangxi Jingtai Water Conservancy Company and Electrical Power Construction Company have tentatively agreed to purchase the alternative HDPE pipes of 600mm diameter so as to Fast-track the construction pipeline between the Kimugu intake point and the treatment works.
The engineer said that the construction of 13 million cubic meters water storage tank and other treatment works at Duka Moja, which include chemical storage mixing building, sedimentation tank, filters, filters gallery and control room, 5000 cubic meters treated water storage tank, Chlorine storage and mixing building, pump house, backwash water and sludge lagoon, sludge drying beds and staff houses were at various stages of completion.
The site has been connected with electricity following the intervention of PDU Director John Karanja.
The team also visited the ongoing construction of New Kapcheptoror Tank at Timbilil which will receive and store 1,000 cubic meters of treated water that will be pumped from Kimugu treatment works at Duka Moja.
The water will be supplied to Kapsoit residents and those living in the peri-urban area in Kericho by gravitational means. The water storage tank is at 60 per cent to completion.
The PDU Director observed that once the project is commissioned, the water supply from the project would supply over 200,000 residents of Kericho town, Kapsuser town, Kapsoit and those living in the peri-urban and the surrounding areas up to the year 2030 and beyond.
Eng. Masinde added that excavation and laying of smaller HDPE pipes from the Kimugu water treatments works to nearby centres of Kericho town and Kapsoit was ongoing with major sections having been completed with a pipeline of a total of 30.2 kilometres having been covered.
Various other high ranking government officials and dignitaries who included Water Cabinet Secretary Cecily Kariuki, Rift Valley Regional Commissioner Mr. George Natembeya have previously visited the site to inspect the project.
By Dominic Cheres