KENYA: EIB and AFD finance a water and sanitation project in Kisumu

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KENYA: EIB and AFD support water and sanitation in Kisumu©africa924/Shutterstock

The European Investment Bank (EIB) and the French Development Agency (AFD) have announced a USD 79 million package for Kisumu County. The funds are intended to finance a drinking water and sanitation project.

A meeting has recently been held in Kisumu, the capital of the county of the same name, located on the shores of Lake Victoria. The county officials mainly discussed the city’s drinking water and sanitation project and the financing proposal of the French Development Agency (AFD) and the European Investment Bank (EIB). The two financial institutions want to jointly release $79 million to support the Kisumu County government on this issue.

The project will be carried out by the local utility, Kisumu Water and Sewerage Company. According to its director, Thomas Odongo, “the project is ongoing and is only waiting for the agreement between the partners to be signed”. This involves making 15,000 new connections to the drinking water distribution network in the city of Kisumu and 3,000 in the surrounding areas.

The sanitation challenge in Kisumu

Regarding sanitation, the Kisumu County Government plans to extend the sewer network by 31 km, allowing Kisumu International Airport to connect to the network. In fact, Kisumu, like other counties in Kenya, and even other countries around Lake Victoria, are working to prevent pollution of Lake Victoria from wastewater discharges into it.

These effluents pollute the great lake that produces drinking water for millions of people. In addition, they promote the expansion of invasive plants such as water hyacinth, which suffocates aquatic animals. Kisumu County authorities are encouraging companies to treat their wastewater before it is released into the environment.

Until recently, Kenya Breweries, Kenya’s leading brewing company, announced the construction of a wastewater treatment plant for its Kisumu plant, with an objective to reuse 90% of its waste.

The plant will have a daily treatment capacity of 15,000 m3 of water and will cost Kenya Breweries $40 million to build. The brewer assures that the future plant should enable it to gain autonomy from the Kisumu Water and Sewerage Company’s water distribution network. More importantly, its effluents will not be likely to end up in Lake Victoria.

Jean Marie Takouleu

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