Kenya receives credit boost for Mwache Damfrom MARIA MACHARIA in Nairobi, Kenya
NAIROBI – THE World Bank Group’s Board of Executive Directors has approved a US$200 million International Development Association (IDA) credit to Kenya to finance the multipurpose Mwache Dam.
This would enable the facility increase access to clean water supply, sanitation and income generating activities through sustainable agriculture practices in Kwale County.
The financing will support the Kenya Coastal Region Water Security and Climate Resilience project, the second operation under an overarching Kenya Water Security and Climate Resilience Program (KWSCRP), which aims to build water security and climate resilience in the country.
Kenya’s coastal region, which is home to 3.3 million people, suffers from drought and lack of rainfall during parts of the year and flooding in the rainy season.
Poor water quality, rising sea-levels and increasing land degradation also affect local communities, which depend heavily on limited water resources for incomes, agriculture, tourism and electricity.
Diarietou Gaye, the World Bank Country Director for Kenya, said the availability of clean water is crucial for millions of Kenyans fighting to raise themselves out of poverty and was a priority for the country under its Vision 2030.
“This project will help to reduce health risks posed by water-borne and sanitation-related diseases, and in turn improve the economy and the environment, all factors that are vital to reducing poverty and achieving shared prosperity,” Gaye said.
Gustavo Saltiel, the World Bank’s Task Team Leader for the project, said in addition to supplying nearly 70 million cubic meters of water per year for Mombasa and Kwale, the project will increase resilience against floods and droughts, address food insecurity and constrained growth throughout the coastal region, ultimately benefitting approximately 1 million people.
“The project’s emphasis on improving the sustainability of the Mwache catchment will integrate watershed management and conservation actions with the needs of local communities to develop sustainable economic activities as a step towards improving the quality of life for families in the region,” said Saltiel.
Water supply in coastal Kenya is insufficient to meet the needs of people and local businesses especially in Mombasa, which accounts for half of Kenya’s coastal demand for water.
– CAJ News
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