Government officers supervising implementation of various projects in the counties have been asked to ensure they obtain all mandatory certifications before the exercise starts.
This is meant to cushion the projects against litigation or stoppage mid-way by regulatory institutions mandated to
authorize or supervise the implementation process.
It would also ensure proper supervision and evaluation of the implementation process.
The warning was given on Tuesday in Machakos town, during a County Development Implementation Coordination Committee (CDICC) meeting chaired by County Commissioner, Esther Maina CDICC at her Boardroom.
It followed a revelation that several multi-million shilling irrigation projects undertaken by the National Irrigation
Board in the county had neither acquired an Environment Impact Assessment Report from NEMA, nor sought the input of the water resources authority.
The Water Resources Authority area Manager, John Kinyanjui and the County NEMA director Sophie Mutemi were shocked to learn that the board had initiated major dams and irrigation projects without involving them prior to, during and in post implementation period.
Machakos County Irrigation Officer Willy Katembu had told the meeting that the board had overseen the implementation of Mukengesya and Kwa Maundu/Katelembu irrigation projects as well as Kwa Mutiso and Mwangi-Kangonde dams which had cost the government over Sh.140million.
He told the committee that Mukengesya irrigation development which is in Matungulu sub-county was completed three years ago at a cost of Sh. 64,834,800.
The officer told the committee that the project works involved dam excavation, intake construction, auxiliary structures, piping, pump and provision of green houses.
A similar project was also undertaken at Kwa Mutiso in Machakos Central Sub-county at a cost of Sh. 46,727,260. It also involved dam excavation, intake works auxiliary structures pipes and pump, construction of two 250 cubic meters corrugated metal water tanks, green houses and provision of drip irrigation kits.
The other two projects Kwa Maundu-Katelembu dam in Machakos Central Sub-County and Mwangi-Kangonde dam in Masinga sub- county involved dam excavation, intake works and auxiliary structures, he explained. They respectively cost the government Sh.14, 452,450 and 14,311,200.
The NIB was instructed by the committee to move with speed and formalise all certifications with the two institutions so that the projects are spared the risk of being declared illegal.
By Justus Keesi