MORE WATER AGAINST COVID-19

Mombasa sinks boreholes at Likoni channel, private sector called to action against Covid-19

One borehole drilled on each side of the Likoni crossing channel to ensure constant supply of water to wash hands.

In Summary

• County Water and Sanitation executive Tawfiq Balala said the drilling was to start on Friday evening on the Island side.

•  Kenya National Chambers of Commerce and Industry Mombasa chair Mustafa Ramadhan says more private sector players have to complement the efforts of the government.

Mombasa county water and sanitation executive Tawfiq Balala washes his hands at the Likoni ferry crossing channel on Friday.
PERSONAL HYGIENE Mombasa county water and sanitation executive Tawfiq Balala washes his hands at the Likoni ferry crossing channel on Friday.
Image: JOHN CHESOLI

The Mombasa county government will drill a borehole on each side of the Likoni Crossing Channel to ensure a constant supply of water for commuters to wash their hands.

County Water and Sanitation executive Tawfiq Balala said drilling will start on Friday evening on the island side. Each of the boreholes will take at most two days to complete.

“From tonight, we are bringing the main water source here so that pumping can continue 24 hours to cater to the traffic here,” Balala said on Friday.

He said the water will also be sanitized.

Kenya Ferry Services on Wednesday launched the hand-washing campaign for ferry users after installing 100 taps on either side of the crossing channel in a bid to keep the coronavirus away.

“So far, there is no case of coronavirus in Mombasa and we want to keep it that way. The ferry crossing has been our biggest headache because of the 300,000 people who cross the channel daily,” Balala said.

Initially, water boozers were used to provide water.

He spoke after the donation of 100 cartons of soap for use at the crossing channel by Pwani Oil Product Limited.

Kenyan National Chambers of Commerce and Industry Mombasa chair Mustafa Ramadhan said more private sector players have to take the queue and chip in to complement government efforts.

Ramadhan said the county has set an example.

“We are pleased the national and county governments are very proactive. In fact, the private sector is playing catch-up to them,” said Ramadhan.

“We’ve talked to our members to come and contribute to these efforts and we thank Pwani Oil for responding fast,” Ramadhan said.

The KNCCI said this is part of giving back to the community.

“Different companies will be contributing to these efforts,” he added.

Balala said the transmission of the virus cannot be stopped by the government alone.

“The government is doing its bit but at the end of the day, everybody has to take care of themselves and their family,” the executive said.

KFS managing director Bakari Goa said only collaborative efforts will sustain the measures to keep the coronavirus away.

He said the drilling of the boreholes will go a long way to helping resident stay healthy.

Meanwhile, a lobby group in Mombasa has asked the government to offer financial aid to vulnerable groups to mitigate the economic effects of the Covid-19.

Capital Youth Caucus Association of Kenya on Friday said children, women, the elderly and persons living with disabilities will suffer the most as the country gears towards an economic meltdown.

“So many livelihoods have been dismantled as people can't go to work or hustle for a living. This is because of the measures put in place to mitigate the spread of the virus,” CYCA Kenya’s Evans Momanyi said.

In a statement, Momanyi said farmers in rural areas are on the receiving end as their products cannot get to the market.

“Everyone is on panic mode,” he said.

He said though the government is doing its best to ensure Kenyans remain safe, it should borrow a leaf from developed countries such as the US, Canada, and France, which have set aside funds to cushion their citizens from the effects of the economic meltdown caused by the pandemic.

Momanyi said the lobby will soon outline recommendations to the national government.

“We, as CYCA Kenya, are ready to support the government in its COVID-19 mitigation measures.

 

Edited by E.Kibii

KNCCI Mombasa chair Mustafa Ramadhan, county water executive Tawfiq balala, Mombasa Water Company md Anthony Njaramba, KFS MD Bakari Goa and Kenya Red Cross Mombasa chair Mahmoud Noor at the Likoni ferry crossing channel on Friday.
LEADING BYEXAMPLE KNCCI Mombasa chair Mustafa Ramadhan, county water executive Tawfiq balala, Mombasa Water Company md Anthony Njaramba, KFS MD Bakari Goa and Kenya Red Cross Mombasa chair Mahmoud Noor at the Likoni ferry crossing channel on Friday.
Image: JOHN CHESOLI