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Stakeholders seek to retain local water firm

Oliver Musembi @PeopleDailyKe

Thika residents and leaders have defied Kiambu Governor Ferdinand Waititu’s move to merge water companies and proposed to have the local water supply firm licensed.

The decision reached during a public participation forum, gives the Water Services Regulatory Board (Wasreb) the go ahead to license Thika Water and Sanitation Company (Thiwasco) as an autonomous service provider.

This in effect means the water firm, which was dissolved by the county government along with seven others to form the Kiambu Water and Sewage Company in March, will operate independently once it gets Wasreb approval.

During the meeting attended by local leaders including area MP Patrick Wainaina, MCAs, Thiwasco chairman Mukora Wakimani as well as religious and community leaders, the residents gave the firm a clean bill of health and said its merger would adversely affect its efficiency.

Wasreb chief executive Robert Gakubia said the water companies are supposed to apply for new licences and this must be preceded by a public participation exercise.

Wainaina welcome the move, saying it paves way for the ongoing expansion of water supply through two projects funded by the World Bank and Danida to the tune of Sh1 billion and Sh11 billion, respectively.

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