Bad water scare in four city buildings

Employees in at least four buildings in the city centre have been warned not to drink or use the tap water.

This is after the water was found to be contaminated with sewerage, raising fears of a cholera outbreak.

A spot check by The Standard revealed that the managements of I&M, Pioneer, Post Bank and Rahena buildings were aware of the lurking danger.

A memo addressed to I&M staff implored workers to avoid using tap water. It, however, indicated that the issue was being resolved by the Nairobi City Water and Sewerage Company.

“… Pass the information to our workmates that the condition of tap water in the building is suspicious and the matter has been reported to Nairobi Water who are handling it. The water should be used for flashing toilets only,” read the internal memo by Peter Mwania Nzuki.

A security guard at I&M Building said the contaminated water flowing from the taps had been caused by a blocked sewerage drainage system. He said the problem was detected on Tuesday, adding that he had also sipped the water ‘only for it to taste funny’.

“Even after fetching the water in buckets, you could tell that it was not clear. I even recommended to the management that the water be taken to the laboratory for testing,” said the guard who requested anonymity.

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Pump water

The management has been forced to pump out all the stored water as it waits for the problem to be resolved.

A guard at Pioneer House said the building’s inhabitants were facing similar challenges, which had disrupted operations.

“The issue is not a trivial one because it could easily lead to the spread of cholera and or other diseases associated with inhabiting a dirty environment. This should be sorted out sooner rather than later,” she said.

The guards at Rehema House said they suspected the contamination was due to leaks in the old water and sewer lines.

Nairobi City Water and Sewerage Company Managing Director Nahashon Muguna and Corporate Affairs Director Mbaruku Vyakweli had not returned our calls for comments on the matter by the time of going to press.

Workers from the water company, however, were seen trying to unclog the drainage systems outside Pioneer House. They, too, refused to speak on the matter but only said they were 'working round the clock' to fix the situation.

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EmployeesPost BankPioneerI&MRahena buildingsCholeraNairobi County