The National Water Harvesting and Storage Authority (NWHSA) and the County Government of Taita Taveta, at Mwatate signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), that will pave the way for the expansion and rehabilitation of water infrastructure.
The partnership will ease the perennial shortage of water for both domestic and commercial use for the local residents, especially in the dry areas of Mwatate, Voi, and Taveta Sub-Counties.
Key among the infrastructures set to turn around the water situation in the coastal semi-arid county are the Njoro Kubwa Spring and the Mzima II water projects, which have the potential to add over 90,000 cubic metres of daily water supply to the County and Regional water supply system.
NWHSA through its Board’s Chairperson, Rt. Rev. Dr. Samuel Mwangi, lauded the closing of ranks between the County and the National Government, through availing water resources for both domestic and commercial use.
The Chair further said that the Authority is on a mission to unlock the water potential of all counties in the country, in a move to support the National Government’s agenda of ensuring food security and meeting the global index for access to safe drinking water for all.
“We’re on a mission to ensure that each county’s water potential is exploited to the fullest and help propel the government’s agenda of food security and access to safe drinking water to every Kenyan,” said Rev. Mwangi.
Taita Taveta’s Governor, Andrew Mwadime, welcomed the gesture and the strategic partnership that he says has the potential to unlock the county’s agricultural potential, while at the same time improving the socio-economic activities of the residents.
The Governor further reiterated his open-door policy of partnership, particularly in finding mutual areas of cooperation with the national government.
“We keep our doors open for partnerships, and especially areas of mutual benefit with the national government to deliver our county and state pledges to the electorates,” said Mwadime.
In an annual water and sanitation Report released by Tavevo Water and Sewerage Company in January 2023, the County’s daily water supply stands at 15,000 cubic metres against a daily demand of 26,000 cubic meters.
Mzima II, a Sh40-billion government-funded project, according to local leaders remains the last piece of the puzzle to the perennial acute water shortage, not only in Taita Taveta but also in other coastal counties of Kwale, Mombasa, and Kilifi.
By Arnold Linga Masila