LA lobby has said that corruption and poor governance are hurting the development of the water sector in Kenya.
Kenya Water for Health organization programs coordinator Felix Brian said many small water supply systems and water projects have stalled because people embezzled the projects’ funds.
He said many investors fund the water projects, but unfortunately, the projects do not last more than three years due to a lack of proper management.
“A lot of water projects in rural don’t get to see their third birthdays because of poor supervision and misuse of funds and hence the projects cannot be sustainable,” he said.
He said the water projects are left inactive and nobody takes a step in overhauling them since there is no money to cater for operation and maintenance expenses.
Brian said leaders also politicize the water projects inhibiting their progress and sustainability.
He said instead of leaders engaging stakeholders and donors or budgeting for the existing water infrastructure, they come up with new ones only to collapse after a short while.
The officer said majority of political leaders are only interested in making names for themselves and wouldn’t want to repair a project that was done by somebody else or another organization.
He said once the water projects are launched they end up being poorly managed and eventually stall.
“There are several water projects worth millions in rural that have malfunctioned because of a few things that broke down but no one is interested in repairing them,” he said.
Brian said the community is not effectively engaged in managing the water projects.H
e said people always expect more from the donors or organizations that have brought the projects forgetting that they also have a great responsibility in their management.
The lobby said the community and political leaders won’t challenge themselves to raise funds to repair water projects but expect a donor to continue supporting them.
He said the counties cannot account for non-revenue water resulting in huge bills and failure of stable supply.
Brian said a lot of water is going to waste through water pipe burst and illegal connections and yet the majority of the damages are not timely repaired.
He said the amount of water supplied by the counties is very little compared to the one spilling along the way.
The officer said the country will never achieve a reliable water supply until people and leaders shun greediness and lay effective management systems to enhance water projects and supply.
He said Kenya has enough water sources but their management is not properly done.
Brian said a lack of awareness of water conservation and its connection with the environment has contributed to water shortage.
He said people are damaging forests which support the water sources and some consume unclean water for lack of knowledge.
Brian said for everyone to have access to clean and safe drinking water stakeholders must work six times harder in their current efforts to achieve the Vision 2030 and global goals.
The officer also underscored the importance of counties being proactive and planning ahead of the much anticipated El Nino.
He said the county governments and residents should put down proper strategies to harvest rainwater and store it for future use.
KWAHo is a national non-governmental organization founded in 1976 to implement Water, Sanitation and Hygiene promotion.
It is at facilitating all-inclusive and sustainable water, sanitation and hygiene programs for marginalized communities.