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Concern over high concentration of boreholes in Kisii town

By Eric Abuga | Published Sat, July 21st 2018 at 00:00, Updated July 20th 2018 at 22:01 GMT +3
National Youth Service personnel work at Suneka market bore hole drilling site on 24/06/2017. There has been concerns over illegal drilling of bore holes in Kisii County. (Sammy Omingo/standard)

Concerns are being raised on the high concentration and drilling of illegal boreholes in Kisii town’s central business District.

It has emerged that a borehole being done at the Kenya Medical Training College (KMTC) Kisii branch was never licensed neither did they request for authorization from any Government sanctioned agency.

The matter was reported at Kisii Central police Station after the Town Administration confirmed that KMTC was drilling the borehole without proper documentation.

The Town Administrator in charge of Operations Wesley Saisi said they stopped the project until the institution complies with every requirement.

The County National Environmental Management Agency Director Tom Togo said his office was not aware of the borehole being done at KMTC Kisii.

“We are worried of the high concentration of boreholes around that area. We are going to stop any further drilling. We are going to verify the said documents that they claim were issued from our office.”

Togo explained that majority of those doing boreholes in the town were flaunting every basic requirement adding that this year his office has not been issuing any licenses.

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“Most of them begin drilling on Friday evening when most government officers are away and by Monday they are done,” said Togo.

KMTC Principal Dorothy Tshombe said they had complied with all the requirements. “We got all the permits and we have already completed the drilling process. Our headquarters can’t approve any project without proper documentation.”

However, the Principal didn’t present the actual permits on our request to authenticate her allegations.

Our source within the Gusii Water and Sewerage Company confirmed to us that the institution had not applied for authorization.

County Executive Committee Member in charge of Water and Environment Dr Skitter Oncharo warned that action will be taken on all those who have dug boreholes with proper documentation. “They have been doing it without approval. They will face the consequences.”

At least five bore holes have been drilled in the past five months in Kisii town all along hospital road.

Other than the one being done at KMTC, another one was done at the adjacent Kisii Teaching and Referral Hospital while at least three others have done at four buildings near the medical facility.  

Before drilling any borehole, a site reconnaissance and site mapping is done, drilling of trial pits, Geophysical studies and field tests, determination water consistence and water flow and hydro-dynamic.

The hydro-geological data, maps, graphs and cross-section profiles obtained from the hydro-geological survey are used in determination of important information such as; ground water condition, estimation of drilling depth and identification of stress areas.

A permit from water resource management authority (WRMA) is issued to clients after geological survey report submission. WRMA permit is a requirement before borehole drilling.

An Environmentalist also needs to be contracted to carry out an E.I.A (Environmental Impact Assessment) of the project. This will facilitate the issuance of the NEMA license which is also a prerequisite in drilling.

 


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