New policy to improve water supply ‘for all’

Cabinet secretary says move will ensure that 80 per cent of Kenyans get reliable supply of the commodity by 2022

Water and Irrigation ministry is drafting a policy to reform distribution of the resource to ensure at least 80 per cent of Kenyans have reliable supply by 2022.

Cabinet secretary Simon Chelugui said the document will inform the government on where priority projects should be undertaken.

Speaking during a consultative forum with the Council of Governors (CoG) on the National Water Policy and Strategies in Naivasha, Chelugui said as it is, the current plan is outdated.

“The policy in use was drafted in 1999 but with a new one, it will  guide implementation of the Water Act 2016,” he said.

Chelugui said the document, to be forwarded to Cabinet in September, will develop water harvesting strategies and storage capacity to meet the rising demand for the commodity.

“This will contribute towards the realisation of water security and promote sustainable development in line with the ‘Big Four’ agenda,” added the CS.

CoG committee on Water and Environment chairperson Kiraitu Murungi said poor coordination and inadequate funding was derailing access to the commodity.

The Meru governor said lack of consultation with stakeholders is a huge impediment to achieving reforms.

The new policy will replace Sessional Paper No.1 on ‘National Policy on Water Resources Management and Development’, whose reforms were operationalised by the 2002 Water Act.

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