Anybody found washing vehicles along Lake Victoria or any river will be prosecuted, Kisumu governor Anyang’ Nyong’o has warned.
He said on Wednesday that water sources must be protected in line with the county’s ‘blue economy’ needs.
The administration and residents will not allow practices that cause water pollution, Nyong’o said.
From November 26 to 28, Nairobi hosted the first Sustainable Blue Economy Conference. It focussed on creating economic growth, ensuring healthy water and building safe communities. More than 18,000 participants from 184 countries attended. They discussed harnessing the potential of oceans, seas, lakes and rivers to improve lives.
In his Jamhuri Day speech, Nyong’o said water towers are dying and the problem must be fixed before it gets out of hand.
“Rivers that have been the county’s irrigation enablers are drying up, raw industrial waste flows freely into the lakes. This turns the county’s beautiful blue water into habitats for menaces like hyacinth,” he said.
He promised residents that he will tackle hyacinth next year. The governor promised to deal with hyacinth decisively and conclusively. He urged residents to support the initiative.
“We can’t sit by as the blue economy we’ve survived on for decades gets destroyed by our own foolish industrial and farming activities,” the county chief said.
The county will partner with state agencies such as the National Environment Management Authority to stop effluent from choking and poisoning water and killing fish.
“We are all called to action to uphold our freedom by making the right choices in environmental management,” Nyong’o said.
He said simple acts such as planting trees improve the environment and protect water bodies.
Last year, Kisumu planted 145,000 trees in an effort to increase its forest cover.