18 March 2014

Kenya: Nairobi Sewer Network to Increase in 5 Years

Nairobi — The Nairobi City Water and Sewerage Company (NCWSC) is seeking to increase the sewer pipeline network in Nairobi by 200 kilometres in the next five years.

This follows revelation that about 40 percent of the city is not covered by a sewer system, making the disposal of effluent difficult, which subjects residents to illnesses.

Speaking during the commissioning of the Sh70 million rehabilitation works of the Ruai Sewerage system, NCWSC Chairman Peter Kuguru indicated that more focus will be put to developing the network in estates so as to ensure a large area is covered.

"At the moment, we have got a deficit of about 40 percent of uncovered area and we would like to improve that by the year 2019. We have a big chunk of Nairobi fully covered by mainline sewer as well as estate sewers. We are not going to concentrate on trunk sewers for the future as that will not be possible but we shall build small estate sewers and that will be manageable," he said.

During the event, Nairobi Governor Evans Kidero emphasised the need for environmental inspections and assessments to be done on a regular basis on all sewer lines so as to ensure there efficient operation.

"We are going to work together with NEMA on a daily basis to get daily reports, weekly reports and monthly reports on the environment and the potential for pollution so that we are able to correct them as soon as possible. We do not want to be reacting and this will help us be pro-active so that we are able to manage them better," he stated.

"We have not been doing environmental inspections as often as it should so that we are able to respond as fast as possible. I would like that on an institutional basis, that we share environmental assessments and inspections and cases of pollution and reports be made on a regular basis."

He further stated that Nairobi's contribution to Kenya's GDP is at 60 percent and that the achievement of Kenya's development blueprint, vision 2030 which include the water sector depends fundamentally on what happens in the capital city.

Kidero had ordered the immediate repair works at the Ruai Sewerage treatment plant after it emerged that the facility's deplorable state was contributing to pollution of the Nairobi River.

He had further expressed concern at the encroachment of land near the plant and stated the need for the squatters there to seek alternative residence elsewhere.

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