By Okong’o Oduya
More than 12 thousand households in Alema, Nangina ward, Samia- Busia County will benefit from a 12 million water project funded by United States Agency for International Development (USAID) through the Kenya Integrated Water, Sanitation and Hygiene project (KIWASH)
According to Deputy Coordinator at USAID water project globally Peter James, “The US Government is ready to pump millions of money in Kenya to make sure that water problem is solved completely”.
Adding “A lot of efforts are underway to help improve water situation in Kenya, Busia county being among the counties that have been mapped out to benefit from the project and that they are investing a lot in the water sector in Kenya because the Kenyan government has shown its commitment in realizing the need to solve problems that come with water scarcity”.
Addressing the residents of Alema and the County leadership, Peter further noted that Samia community will act as a role model to other communities in Kenya in terms of water security provided by the US government.
“You play a part in a global effort that we are undertaking as USAID and United States government. Why does this matter to people of this community? We realized that Kenya has been identified under the global water strategy as a high priority country. It is because of your commitment to your sustainability showing their absolute commitment,” he noted
Busia County boss, Governor Sospeter Ojaamong appreciated the contribution brought by the USAID and through the KIWASH project in the county saying that the multimillion water project will help improve living standard of the area by eradicating poverty adding that Budalangi and Samia sub-counties are the most hit by water scarcity despite the bordering Lake Victoria in the region.
“There is severe water scarcity in Budalangi and Funyula. Even if you walk at night you will find women with Jerricans collecting water. It is a very big embarrassment to see this happening when there is fresh water lake here,” said the county boss
He appreciated USAID for pumping money in the county to improve water status adding that his government will work closely with every stakeholder in realizing development for the people of Busia.
“I want to promise that we shall be very close to the USAID office in Nairobi, we shall also come to Washington to highlight areas where we want assistance. As county government of Busia we will work closely with our development partners so that we can realize development on behalf of the people of Busia,” said Ojaamong
Ojaamong further revealed that there is an ongoing USAID funded water project at Sisenye beach along Lake Victoria where he said they plan to pump more money in the project to help other areas in the region get water.
“As a county government, we are going to put in a lot of money in the coming budget to help people living around the lake get this important commodity adding that he will partner with national government to help pump water upstream to Teso region,” said Ojaamong
Busia county commissioner Michael Oletialal warned, that the government will not tolerate those who will be found vandalizing the pipes, warning that those who will be found selling water at a higher price of ksh2. Per jerrican of 20 liters will be arrested and taken to court.
He said that the national government will work with county government to stop the corrupt officials from stealing from the public at expense of community members.
“We are going to work together with the county government to ensure that no vandalism is done to the properties,” he said
The area member of parliament Oundo Mudenyo noted that this project will benefit other wards beside Nangina ward adding that as a member of the parliament from the constituency he will make sure that every part of the constituency benefit from other water projects in future.
The water will be harness from the water borehole at Alema to 100m3 water tank next to Nangina girl’s high school before it is supplied to other parts of the constituency by use of gravity.