The government is currently engaged in the restoration of 2,000 colonial-era dams and 5,000 boreholes across the nation, according to Gilbert Maluki, Chairman of the National Irrigation Authority Board. This initiative will be funded by the Korean government as part of its strategy to prepare for anticipated El Nino rains. The tendering process for these projects has been conducted through the Ministry of Water and Sanitation. The objective is to refurbish these facilities to enhance the country’s readiness to address food security issues.
Maluki made this announcement during a press event held at the groundbreaking ceremony for the expansion of the Kyumbi Dam in Mavoko, Machakos County. He was joined by Teresia Mbaika, the Devolution PS, Vincent Musyoka, Mwala MP, and Aden Noor Ali, Chairman of the National Industrial Training Authority, among others.
The expansion of the Kyumbi Dam, with a budget of approximately 22 to 25 million shillings, is aimed at increasing its capacity to support food production and public water needs. The government has also allocated 20 million shillings each to the Wathia and Sinai dams, both located in Kinanie ward, Mavoko Sub-County, to enable residents to access water for irrigation.
Furthermore, the government plans to construct 10,000 small dams across the country to facilitate food production through irrigation. Additionally, the National Irrigation Authority (NIA) intends to build 17 mega dams across the country through Public Private Partnerships, with the High Grand Falls Dam set to address water scarcity in Kitui, Garissa, and Tharaka Nithi counties.
Vincent Musyoka, who serves as the UDA secretary general, emphasized the commitment of the Kenya Kwanza government to fulfill campaign promises, particularly in the areas of food security and water provision. The expanded Kyumbi Dam will have a capacity of 45,000 cubic meters, directly benefiting 3,000 households and indirectly benefiting around 18,000 more.
The leaders also led a tree-planting activity along the dam and donated 2,000 grafted hass avocado seedlings to residents for planting in their farms, with the aim of addressing the region’s water scarcity issue.
PS Mbaika stressed the government’s dedication to addressing water-related challenges in the country, particularly in preparation for El Nino. She encouraged county governments to collaborate with the national government to ensure that the promises made by the administration to Kenyans are fulfilled, emphasizing the effective cooperation between the two levels of government since the current administration took office.