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Kitui MPs oppose new water reforms seeking to disband Tanathi water services board

By Phillip Muasya | August 15th 2018

Tanathi Water Services CEO Nicholas Muthui (left) explains a point to the Makueni Governor Kivutha Kibwana (right), the Tanathi Chairman Njeru Ndwiga (Centre) and other stakeholders during a meeting at the Thwake Multi-purpose dam site. [PHOTO: PHILIP MUASYA / STANDARD]

Several MPs have opposed plans to disband Tanathi Water Services Board.

The plans are part of ongoing water sector reforms that seek to introduce regional water boards.

Under the plan being pushed by the Water ministry, supplies to Kitui and Makueni counties will be administered under the Coast Water Services Board while Machakos and Nairobi counties will be served under the Athi Water Services Board.

The regional offices of Tanathi are currently in Kitui town. They will to be moved to Mombasa if the reforms are implemented.

However, MPs Nimrod Mbai (Kitui East), Paul Nzengu (Mwingi North), Rachael Nyamai (Kitui South) and Edith Nyenze (Kitui West) and Kitui Woman Representative Irene Kasalu termed the move 'unfair'.

The MPs argued that lower eastern region faced unique water challenges and should not be lumped together with others.

Speaking in Tseikuru, the MPs claimed that the proposals would deny the region water projects worth Sh5 billion which were to be funded by the Africa Development Bank and other partners.

The MPs are now pushing the Water ministry to abandon the proposals.

“Ukambani has unique water challenges which should be administered from the region without causing confusion. Our water challenges are different from those of other counties and it is better to address them from a unified unit such as Tanathi,” Mr Mbai said.

Mr Nzengu promised to table a motion in Parliament to oppose the implementation of the proposals, which he claimed were meant to punish the people of Ukambani.

The lawmakers claimed that disbanding Tanathi would hurt millions of Ukambani residents who are currently facing an acute water shortage.


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