- Nearly 36 per cent of water produced by the company is unaccounted for due to water theft through illegal water connections.
- Most water theft cases in the region range from meter tampering, meter bypass, illegal re-connection and illegal connection.
Customers disconnected for failure to pay top the list of water theft culprits in Taita Taveta county.
Taita Taveta Water and sewerage company (Tavevo) managing director Richard Kibengo said the non-revenue water team is now investigating tens of customers who are illegally using water even after disconnection.
He said the team is working closely with the Critical Infrastructure Protection Unit of the police to unearth people involved in water theft and vandalism in the region.
The team, he revealed, has already investigated and uprooted more than 65 illegal water connections in the county.
The county loses at least Sh19 million monthly in non-revenue water.
“The main target is to curb losses recorded as a result of non-revenue water and vandalism. The team has narrowed down to people reconnecting back their water after disconnection,” Kibengo said in an interview on Thursday.
Further, Kibengo said, nearly 36 percent of water distributed by the company is unaccounted for due to vandalism, unpaid bills and water theft through illegal water connections.
Most water theft cases in the region range from meter tampering, meter bypass, meter reversing, illegal re-connection and illegal connection.
The managing director noted that disconnected customers are now reconnecting back their pipes to avoid paying outstanding bills.
He warned that those found involved in the unscrupulous dealing will be penalised and their pipeline uprooted.
“Any disconnection existing for more than one month will be flagged and the pipeline disconnected to the off take,” Kibengo warned.
Other than the penalties charged, he said, the pipeline of any customer found stealing water will be uprooted.
He said concerted efforts to fight water theft through illegal connections and unpaid bills has helped the water firm record an increase in revenue in the first quarter of the year.
Kibengo noted that the company is also keen to reduce water losses to less than 20 per cent by 2032 as part of its ten-year strategic plan.
Increased revenues, he said, will ensure adequate finances for funding infrastructure projects, which will in turn generate more revenues for the company.