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Official says open sewer poses a health hazard

 Spilling of raw sewerage has been a common at Kisii’s Gesonso area along the Kisii-Migori road in the past one month. [Eric Abuga, Standard]

Residents of Gesonso have been forced to contend with a pungent smell from open sewers after authorities disagreed on who should repair damaged sewer lines located along the Kisii-Isebania Road.

The sewer has been leaking to the road, rivers and nearby households. Residents say the development is a potential disaster if not resolved.

For more than a month now, boda boda operators have been forced to wade through pools of sewage. Vehicles and pedestrians have not been spared either.

The main sewerage and water system was left open after the contractor building the Sh11 billion Kisii-Isebania moved to the area for site clearance.

Officials Gusii Water and Sanitation Company (GWSC), National Environmental Management Authority (NEMA), the Project’s Resident Engineer, the County Government and other stakeholders have held more than three meetings trying to resolve the issue without success. 

GWSC Technical Officer Domnic Ayora described the development as a hazard and maintains that the contractor should repair the damaged sewers.

“This is a hazard to those living along the project corridor. The contractual obligation to repair public utilities while undertaking the project. These are part of the cost implications in any road project. We have standards that should be met and this should be done in consultation with Government agencies managing those utilities.”

Eng Ayora explained that the contractor had interfered with both water and sewer lines.

He explained that GWSCO and the office of the Resident Engineer agreed to do a joint quotation and the specifications.

“We were to do the costing but they later requested for a joint quotation which we did. They again decided to procure the materials under our supervision but they still proceeded and bought the materials without our involvement.”

But the Project Resident Engineer James Mageto told the Saturday Standard on phone they have made good progress in trying to solve the issue. “We are moving on well and everything is moving as planned.”

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