The project benefits 60,000 people Coverage; Atemo, Oyugis town, Got Agak, Kosele and surrounding areas of Kabando constituency Financier; The African Development Bank to tune of Cost; Ksh706 million. Duration: Began in 2019 and was completed in January 2023. Implementing Agency; Central Rift Valley Water Works Development Agency Beneficiary Agency; Lake Victoria South Water Works Development Agency Production; 12 million liters per day
Its nine thirty in the morning at Atemo village, Kabando constituency in Homabay County, and a group of women of women queue at a water point to fill their water containers commonly refered by the locals as jerrycans. Others are busy washing clothes nearby as they engage in bunter and catch up on family matters. Two other women have filled their jerrycans are tightening the cap as they prepare to leave the water point. Agnes Akinyi, lifts a filled jerrycan and places it on her head.
She has just arrived at Omeso water kiosks, which is a last point to the many components of water project , initiated by the Government of Kenya with support from the African Development Bank.
The project, implemented by the Central Rift Valley Water Works Development Agency (CR-VWWDA), is under the Rift Valley Cluster of the Kenya Towns Sustainable Water Supply and Sanitation Program. The projects under the program were initiated to ensure access to clean, safe and consistent water supply in 28 small towns in Kenya.
As we get back to the lovely women conversing, "We have three water points where we get fresh water from the tap.We have one water point at Kojwach ka Muga ,another at Omeso area and another one at Kambata area. For now, we do not pay for the water," says Akinyi.
She adds that a majority of members of the community have not struggled to install taps inside their homes because of the short distances to the water points. "The three water points have helped reduce queues," adds Akinyi.
A few kilometers from Atemo village in Oyugis town, Emmaculate Anyango is sitting in one of her jericans at a water vendor shop, waiting for her turn to fetch water. Anyango lives in Juakali estate ,a few meters from the water kiosk. Anyango says , initially, residents of Juakali estate had to walk to Ayoro springs, which is two kilometers from the estate, to fetch water for cooking, drinking and other domestic uses. "We pay Sh 5 for every 20-liter jerrycan. The flow of water is steady and the queue moves very fast," she adds.
Another resident, Samuel Odhiambo of Oyugis town,who is a water vendor and owner of a car wash, says they are experiencing a good flow of water. Odhiambo says the project has benefitted residents of Kisuri estate, Owade junction in Oyugis town. He adds that about 50 families from Owade and Kisuri fetch from his shop every day.
While on a routine imspection tour of the projects, CRVWWDA Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Eng. Samuel Oruma, urged residents to protect the infrastructure and ensure the project is a success story.
"For it to be a success story, there is need to protect the infrastructure that forms the basis of the last mile- connectivity program -that is awaiting any available funding to ensure all the local get water at their homesteads." He said.
Chrispine Juma, the CEO at Lake Victoria South Water Works Development Agency, said people in Oyugis and the areas of Kasipul and Kabondo constituencies in the county experienced water shortages in the past.
In April 2019, the African Development Bank (ADB) partnered with the Government of Kenya to address the water shortage in the area. The Ministry of Water, Sanitation and Irrigation, through a joint collaboration between Lake Victoria South Water Works Development Agency and Central Rift Valley Water Works Development Agency, commenced the construction of Oyugis Water Supply Project at Atemo in Kabondo constituency, he explains.
"Water distribution will be achieved by gravity flow, reducing operational costs. With the completion of the project, water supply in Homa Bay County will significantly improve," said the CEO.
He said the project would be handed to Homa Bay Water and Sanitation Company.
"We appeal to the residents of Oyugis to utilize the water supply system and protect the infrastructure from vandalism by criminals," he said.