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November 17, 2018

Counties get Sh2bn donation to improve clean water access

The Swedish ambassador to Kenya Ann Jardfelt has a word with Tharaka Nithi Governor Muthomi Njuki (R) and his Laikipia counterpart Nderitu Mureithi during a retreat in Simba Lodge in Naivasha. /GEORGE MURAGE
The Swedish ambassador to Kenya Ann Jardfelt has a word with Tharaka Nithi Governor Muthomi Njuki (R) and his Laikipia counterpart Nderitu Mureithi during a retreat in Simba Lodge in Naivasha. /GEORGE MURAGE

Two European governments have donated Sh2 billion to six counties to improve water and sanitation services.

The donation was made by the Swedish and Finnish governments to Narok, Tharaka Nithi, Kwale, Laikipia, Migori and Nandi counties.

The funds twill be channeled through the Water Sector Trust Fund.

Yesterday, the counties' governors met the donors at the Lake Naivasha Simba Lodge to review the projects and prepare for the second phase.

According to Swedish ambassador to Kenya Ann Jardfelt, Sh1.6 billion was released in the first phase whose projects were ongoing.

Jardfelt said Sweden was committed to supporting water and sanitation projects, because women and children were the most vulnerable to diseases and drought.

“We are in the process of releasing the last phase of these funds and we hope that the six county governments will put the money into good use,” Jardfelt said.

Water Sector Trust Fund CEO Ismail Shaiye said that they had received Sh2.1 billion from the donors. Each county will receive Sh120m in the first phase.

“The overall objective of the programme is improved equity in access to quality water and basic sanitation in the underserved areas of rural Kenya,” he said.

Tharaka Nithi Governor Muthomi Njuki said the grant will help the counties as crucial noting that in his county sixty percent of the region was arid and semi-arid.

Njuki termed water as very crucial adding that of the six projects that had benefited in the first project four were already complete.

“We are working closely with the Tharaka Nith water board in making sure that the donor sponsored projects are completed on time so that our people can benefit more,” he said.

The sentiments were echoed by his Narok counterpart Samuel Ole Tunai who said that his county was among those currently facing an acute shortage of water.

Tunai said that he would be seeking more assistance from the donors so that they could construct large projects which would have bigger impact on area residents.

 

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