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Over 80 percent of Kalemn’gorok’s population have no access to water

Over 80 percent of Kalemn’gorok’s population in Turkana South sub county has no access to water, according to Chief Officer for Water Services David Maraka.

To address this challenge, the County Government, through the Department of Water Services has partnered with World Vision Kenya committed to revive and upgrade the Nabeye and Naoyaregae water sources, situated between 10 and 15 kilometres away from the town.

The local sources had saline water unfit for human consumption.           

The initiative aligns with Governor Lomorukai’s priority agenda, which focuses on ensuring universal access to water for all residents of Turkana.           

At a meeting to develop a roadmap for the response, Chief Officer for Water Services David Maraka acknowledged that the demand for water in Kalemn’gorok had outstripped the supply capacity of the existing project.

“Through our assessment and reports from residents of the area, more than 80 percent of Kalemn’gorok’s population has no access to water,” Chief Officer Maraka noted.

Following the formation of Aroo Sub-County and the opening up of the larger Turkana South through improved road networks and programs by the county and development partners, Kalemn’gorok has witnessed a huge population growth and rapid urbanization, further increasing the water demand.

“We are aware that residents of the area depend on water vendors whose safety we cannot ascertain. Besides, Kalemn’gorok is a focal point for Kapelibok, Juluk, Nakwamoru, Naoyaregae, Lomokomol, Kalomwae, Nariamoru, Nabeye, and Namakat traders whose water needs we must equally address,” Chief Officer Maraka added.

In the plan, World Vision Manager, Tom Masinde pledged to support the development of a detailed design for the project building on the one they had implemented three years ago through the IMARA Project.

Director for Water Services, Engineer Paul Lotum, said that officers from the Water Department would be deployed to work with those from World Vision Kenya to ensure conformity of the plans with the desired standards.

Director Lotum added that vandalism of water installations has been severely reported at Kalemn’gorok, and he warned that such acts would be dealt with firmly.

The Turkana South Sub County Water Engineer Judy Eregae noted that Kalemn’gorok’s water needs also encompass irrigation, agriculture, and livestock needs.

Engineer Eregae confirmed that routine tests at Kalemn’gorok had proven the high salinity of the waters. She welcomed the move to draw water from Nabeye and Naoyaregae with additional storage facilities to serve the growing population.

“Once the project begins, we will work with partners to conduct public sensitisation on the need for public involvement in safeguarding the installations from vandalism,” Engineer Eregae said.

By Peter Gitonga


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