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Water disconnection at Nakuru GK Prison takes toll

By Mercy Kahenda | Published Fri, July 14th 2017 at 00:00, Updated July 13th 2017 at 20:02 GMT +3
Women's section of the Nakuru GK Prison Photo: Mercy Kahenda, Standard

The Nakuru GK Prison is facing a crisis after water was disconnected in March over a Sh5.8 million bill.

Water in both the male and female sections of the prison was disconnected by Nakuru Water and Sewerage Company (Nawasco) over a six-month accumulated bill.

Officer in Charge James Sawe said inmates were at risk of contracting water-borne diseases such as cholera, typhoid and skin infections.

Supply of water to prison staff quarters was also disconnected.

The shortage has also affected smooth service delivery as prison officers spend working hours looking for water.

"We depend on vendors to supply water but it's not enough and the shortage has also affected the prison officers," said Mr Sawe.

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He said the water they got from the Lanet Army Barracks was not enough to serve both the women's and men's sections.

According to Sawe, young children in the women's part of the prison were the most affected by poor sanitation.

Accrued debts

In addition, suppliers of goods and services have stopped deliveries until the prison managers settle accrued debts amounting to Sh100 million.

Sawe said the debt had accumulated over the past three years.

The financial turmoil at the facility is attributed to a shortage of funding from the Ministry of Interior.

"Control of money and payment is done in Nairobi. This makes it very hard for us to convince our suppliers about when to expect payment," he said.

The officer called on the Government and stakeholders to establish a remand facility in Molo, where the highest number of remandees at the Nakuru prison come from.

There are approximately 500 remand prisoners from Molo at the prison.

He also called on the Judiciary to find a more effective way of delivering rulings to help ease congestion at the prison. 

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