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Water Sanitation and Hygiene

County Government of Nyamira

Water Sanitation and Hygiene

1. Water resources are essential for satisfying basic human needs, health and food production, energy, the restoration and maintenance of ecosystems and for social and economic development in general. According to estimations by the UN, more people die presently due to insufficient access to safe water and basic sanitation.

The development, management, protection and use of water so as to contribute to the eradication of poverty and the promotion of food security are an exceptionally important goal. The role of ground water, rivers, streams, springs and wetlands, forests and other vegetation and other parts of their ecosystems in the water cycle and their importance to water quality and quantity should be acknowledged and protected.

Safe water and basic sanitation are basic human right as enshrined in "The Constitution of Kenya 2010, 43(1)(d)and should therefore be accessible and affordable to all. This is important in order to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the National targets in our country’s economic blueprint, the Kenya Vision 2030

The County Government is mandated to undertake planning, coordination, implementation and monitoring and evaluation of Water sanitation and hygiene projects for socio-economic development within Nyamira County.

2. Vision statement.

A county with equitable and sustainable management and use for water resources for social economic development.

Mission statement.

To provide sustainable, reliable, efficient and cost effective water supply systems that deliver adequate quantity and quality of water to satisfy domestic, agricultural, industrial and commercial purposes for improved quality of life for all.


¨          To develop water/sewerage and irrigation physical infrastructure,

¨          To enhance adoption of modern technologies in water, irrigation and waste water management

¨          To improve efficiency and Capacity in Water/waste water and Irrigation/ Drainage projects to achieve better Service delivery.

¨          To improve water scheme management and supervision services

¨          To enhance stakeholders participation and collaborative efforts

¨          To improve business orientation in the sector

¨          To develop Human Resources.

¨          To enhance the Water Act 2002 legal framework

¨          To prepare Water and Irrigation related bills for Legislation and Amendments.


3. Current Status

Nyamira County is endowed with natural water resources that include rivers, shallow wells, springs, dams, pans and boreholes whose availability varies considerably between seasons as well as across regions depending on the time of the year. Naturally, these water resources are in abundance during the wet period of the year and get scarce during the dry season. Most parts of the County have two main rainy seasons, i.e. the long rains being between March and May while the short rains fall within the months of October and November without any distinct dry spell. Currently majority of the residents in the county depend on protected and unprotected springs for their supply needs whereas another good percentage depend on shallow wells. A small percentage of people are served with piped water which is below 10%. The county since inception has constructed a number medium water supplies. The county does not have formal sewerage treatment works but more than 85% of the population has pit latrines with about 2% having on site septic tanks.

3.1 Water Supply Schemes

To ensure continued access to safe water for domestic use and other purposes (including livestock and poultry keeping, small scale irrigation, fisheries, etc.), communities in various parts in the County have formed groups and established vibrant rural water schemes that ensure continued access to potable water throughout the year. Most of these water facilities have been supported directly by the county government and/or donor funding as well as the community’s cash and in kind contributions.


3.2 Water Sources


Water Source Type Number Remarks
Permanent rivers (traversing the region) 7 R.Sondu, Gucha, Charachani, Eyaka, Nyabomite, Esise,Kemera
Boreholes 26 Some boreholes are low yielding
Shallow wells 5,800 Belong to individuals
Protected springs 2,500  
Unprotected springs 3,300  
Dams 7 Most are silted
% population Time Taken to Fetch Water Remarks
7.8% of the population 1 - 4 minutes

collecting water from the nearest water point

2.4% of the population 5-14 minutes
49.3 of the population 15-29 minutes
30.5% of the population 30 -59 minutes
Only 13.4% of the population more than 1 hr to fetch water
  • The distance to the nearest water point in the county varies between 0 to 4.0 kilometers.
  • Currently, close to 4,000 households (i.e. 3.4% of the total households) are connected to piped water schemes.
  • Majority of the poor, in particular women and girls, spend a significant amount of time fetching water in both rural and urban areas thus denying them time to engage in other economic activities.
  • Improving, protection and prudent management of the County water sources will be highly critical in enhancing and promoting progress across the sectors.

The County economy primarily depends on the natural resource base. Increasing access to sustainable water is a priority of the government within the existing policy framework. The main challenges facing improvement of access to water resources include: inadequate funding, poor local ownership of projects and planting of blue gum trees along riverbanks and other riparian areas.



The county is in the process of preparing a county water, sanitation and hygiene policy which will mainly focus on sustainability of the projects and resource conservation. This will be based on the following principles :

  • Access to clean safe water is a right under the new constitution(CoK 2010)
  • Fresh water is finite and vulnerable resource which is essential to sustain life and development.
  • Management of water resources along natural catchment and riparian areas
  • Participatory approach for better conflict resolutions and optimal use of resources for sustainability
  • Water is both social and economic good therefore resource management shall partly be financed by users (user/polluter pay principle)
  • Treatment of effluents and reuse /recycling
  • Open awareness creation, communication and reporting to public


  • Is an existing water supply scheme serving Kebirigo Market and its environs.
  • The water source is at Nyageita spring next to Gucha River.
  • The distribution network has been improved and storage tanks constructed to increase the area of coverage and consumers
  • Procured and installed a more powerful lift pump at a cost of Kshs. 1.10 million to facilitate efficient and continued delivery of clean water to meet the customer demand within the market center and the community in the neighborhood

   6.2Manga Water Supply.

  • Substantially complete and Satisfactory
  • 120 consumers connected ,however the department intends to increase the number of consumers to enable the scheme to qualify to be managed by Gusii Water and sanitation Company
  • One kiosk constructed from where water is tapped by consumers at a cost.

6.3 Miriri Borehole Water Supply

  • Was drilled 10 years and capped .Currently the distribution network is in place and CWP (Communal Water Points) constructed for use by the community.
  • Borehole yield is estimated at 4.50m3/hour,
  • From the topographic mapping, the projected consumer base to be supplied with water is big
  • The Gucha River and the bordering stream are far below the spring ground ,hence completion of the distribution of water from the borehole is of great importance to the community

6.4 Esani Secondary School Spring.

The school currently collects water for its domestic use from a protected spring situated just outside the compound. The school wishes to have the water tapped from within the school compound for convenience purposes.

In order to meet the water requirements of the school, the Water Department has constructed the following works:

  • Protection of the existing spring
  • Constructed a 25m3 collection sump at the spring
  • Installed a pipeline from the spring to the collection
  • Installation of rising main and distribution lines
  • Constructed
  • Pumping unit installed to pump water to storage tank.

6.5 Mekenene Water Project

  • Is located in Nyansiongo Division of Borabu Sub-County.
  • The intake is a water pan (reservoir) from which water will be gravity tapped and supplied to the lower catchment areas that include Nyabionyo Township and Chepilat Trading Centre.
  • The headwork for the gravity fed system is complete
  • Laying of distribution pipe lines to Chepilat/Nyabionyo Secondary School and Nyansiongo Township is complete.
  • Water will also be pumped from the reservoir to a distribution tank on a higher ground to serve those consumers who cannot access water through a gravity system.

6.6 Isinta Borehole.

  • Is located within the Health Centre was drilled, tested and constructed some years back to serve the community.
  • The borehole yield is 4m3 /hr,
  • The 50m3 storage masonry tanks, distribution pipeline and water kiosks, will improve access to water and area of coverage. The project targets to benefit about 500 households.

6.7 Ekerenyo Spring

  • This spring is located within the Ekerenyo Market
  • With the construction of a masonry distribution reservoir constructed uphill, Laying of the rising main and Distribution lines ,Construction of a 25m3 collection sump into which water will flow and stored for pumping ,Pump House and Spring protection and Auxiliaries, 50m3 storage tank, the project, will serve the business community in town / market, nearby institutions ( Sub County HQs, Health Facility, Boarding / Day Schools ,Police Facility) as well as the households in the neighborhood

6.8 Nyagwacha ws

  • Serves Masosa sec and primary schools ,Nyasore market and surrounding community
  • 50m3 tank completed
  • 3km gravity lines completed .
  • 2no water kiosk constructed
  • 2no. Springs constructed

6.9. Nyamira Urban Water Supply Scheme

In an effort to improve the water supply within the Nyamira Town and its environs, the Department purchased a booster pump at a cost of Kshs 1.2 million for the intake unit to pump more raw water into the treatment works. Installation of this pump has since improved the volume of water that is treated thus increasing the amount of water that is distributed to consumers on a daily basis.

Groundwater Supplies

6.10 Newly Drilled Boreholes

  • 4 No. productive boreholes drilled at Kineni Market, Kineni Health Centre, Senator Kebaso Secondary School and Tente area.
  • Kineni Market borehole project cost was Ksh 8.1million and complete drilling works costed Ksh 3.2Million.Elevated platform has been erected. planned works are pump installation, water kiosk construction and distribution lines
  • Tente borehole cost Kshs 5.9m, work entailed sinking of borehole, laying of distribution lines and construction of overhead storage tanks & water kiosks ..

The borehole at Kineni Health Facility and that at Senator Kebaso Secondary School were sunk by the National Water Conservation and Pipeline Co. Ltd under the National Government support to the County. However, in an effort to increase access to safe water to the communities in the vicinity of these two water facilities, the Department of Water laid the distribution lines and constructed storage tanks and water kiosks.

Beneficiaries of the four water supply schemes above are as follows:

  • Kineni Market Borehole: the planned milk cooler plant that will benefit about 1,000 dairy farmers in the region while close to 600 households will be served by this project.
  • Kineni Health Center Borehole: to benefit the health facility, a nearby secondary school as well as about 80 households in the vicinity;
  • Senator Kebaso Secondary School Borehole: to benefit the school of more than 300 students and about 400 households in the surrounding areas; and
  • Tente Borehole: to benefit the primary school comprising 450 children, the SDA Conference Center as well as close to 150 households the community resident in the vicinity.


Drilled Boreholes

A total of 7 boreholes were drilled and 4 boreholes proposed in the county as tabled below. Completion works are on-going for pipeline laying, completion of water kiosks construction, test pumping and electrical power installation .

Site No. Site Name Site Location Sub-Location Location Division / Ward Max Depth Remarks
1. Bogwendo Primary School Bogwendo North Kitutu Magombo / Magombo 250 Borehole drilled and capped in FY2013-2014. Delayed payments resulted in non completion of the project
2. Marindi Primary School Bundo Bogichora Bogichora 120 Borehole drilled and capped in FY2013-2014 Delayed payments resulted in non completion of the project
4. Nyangena Tea Buying Centre Ikobe Bosamaro Chache Bosamaro 300 Borehole drilled and capped in FY2013-2014 Delayed payments resulted in non completion of the project
5. Matunwa Village Bokurai Itibo Itibo 120 Borehole drilled and capped in FY2013-2014 Delayed payments resulted in non completion of the project
6. Nyangware Primary School Getare Kiabonyoru Kiabonyuru 300 Borehole drilled and capped in FY2013-2014 Delayed payments resulted in non completion of the project
7. Okano Primary School Nyakenimo Bokeira Bokeira 300 Borehole drilled and capped in FY2013-2014 Delayed payments resulted in non completion of the project
8. Omokirondo Primary School Bonyakoni Nyagokiania Itibo 320 Borehole drilled and capped in FY2013-2014 Delayed payments resulted in non completion of the project


                                               BOREHOLES PROPOSED IN FY 2015-2016

9 Nyandoche Ibere       Nyansiongo 300 Tendered and awaiting evaluation in FY 2014-2015
10 Nyariacho       Gachuba 250 Tendered and awaiting evaluation in FY 2014-2015
11 Nyanchonoria       Rigoma 300

Tendered and awaiting evaluation in FY 2014-2015

12 Omorare       Ekerenyo 300 Tendered and awaiting evaluation in FY 2014-2015
10. Kenyerere Primary School Bonyengwe Borangi Magwagwa 320 Hydrogeological survey done


Ekerenyo Protected spring with Pump house and sump





Nyagwacha water Kiosk at Nyasore market



Amakara Cattle Trough
Miriri Borehole pump installed



Kebabe Girls Sec School Water Tanks

9.0 Rainwater Harvesting

Rainwater harvesting technology for increasing/improving access to safe drinking water to our communities, and more particularly to our schools and health facilities in the county.

This financial year the department was able to finance and complete roof harvesting for Riomego secondary school with 3no. 10,000 litre plastic tanks complete with low level platform and water points.

10.0        Bilateral donor support for Water Supply and Sewerage Works

With donor support from Orio/KfW, and from the Governments of the Netherlands, Germany and WSTF, respectively, Nyamira and Keroka Water Supply Schemes are currently undergoing major rehabilitation works the aim of which is to boost water production.


Funded through LVWATSAN II by African Development Bank to the tune of kshs 366,million in for construction of a complete new water supply aimed at increasing production from the current 300m3/day to 3000m3/day to serve an ultimate population of 59,400 persons. An earlier emergency repair ( short term intervention) were carried out at a cost kshs 31 million to the old water supply.


Already, repairs/rehabilitations at our treatment plant and intake unit in Nyamira, including erection of a 108,000-liter capacity elevated pressed steel storage tank, construction of 2 No. communal water kiosks at Nyabite Market, funded by Water Services Trust Fund. As part of these rehabilitations, a 4-km water pipeline trenching and laying is complete from Nyamira towards Nyamaiya to cater for more people that are currently not served.


The Government of Netherlands, in collaboration with the Kenya National Government, through Lake Victoria South Water Services Board (LVSWSB) is funding the development of Bonyunyu Dam to a tune of Kshs: 6.6 billion. The project is to harness   Gucha river to benefit communities in both Nyamira and Kisii Counties. Already, the Government of Netherlands and Kenya National Government, have allocated Kshs 28.0 million each (i.e. a total of Kshs: 56.0 million) for feasibility studies on the planned project. This exercise has already commenced and is being conducted by an international consulting firm that was competitively identified as per the bilateral rules and regulations that govern such engagements between donor and recipient governments.

8. Outcomes

ü  Time to collect water reduced in those schemes with distribution networks

ü  Queuing at water sources reduced as people collect water from nearby water kiosks

ü  Turbidity of water stabilized where springs have been protected

ü  Distances to collect water significantly reduced in project areas

ü  Occurrence of water related diseases significantly reduced

9. Impact

The county in the year 2013/2014 constructed 17no medium water supplies ,15no springs and 7no boreholes which on completion will increase the number of households served by clean safe water by 6250

10. Public Awareness and Participation

The constitution mandates county governments to allow open public participation. Public was consulted during preparation of the CIDP and their input was taken into consideration in giving out names and project priorities in each area. The department”s annual development plans are subjected to public input at the Ward / Sub-County forums before implementation.

11. Expenditure and Budgetary Allocations

Before implementation of the projects meetings are held with the beneficially communities and roles of each actor is defined . Once this has been accepted an MOU is drawn where the community is responsible for taking over the project once completed. The community members take over all operation and maintenance   activities with the supervision of the department. This therefore frees the county from running the schemes as the communities pay for the recurrent costs of the project and this therefore allows the county to focus more on development of new water projects and expansion of the existing ones.

12. Future plans

v  Enhance community participation from start to completion of project.

v  Use of more adaptable and appropriate technologies in water supply systems

v  Enforce catchment protection rules that are participatory .

v  Use of participatory monitoring and evaluation in project management

v  Involve all gender in all water activities.


13.Risks and Mitigations Measures

S/No Risks / Challenges Mitigations Measures
1 Environmental degradation Community sensitization and involvement in protection of water catchments areas.
2 Encroachment in water catchments

Community Participation in the management of water resources through formulation of Water Resource Users Association and collaborate with WARMA to form WRUAs for catchment protection

3 Inadequate funding

Mobilize more resources from partners-NGOs, private sector; donors and user community

4 Project sustainability Capacity building of management committees on best practices. Community participation in management of facilities. Payment of   water user fees.
5 Land for facilities Negotiations and seeking for funds to buy land for facilities like land for sewerage treatment works

14. Methodologies, Strategies and Approaches


To Provide Engineering and Organizational Services to the Community and General Public.


  • Inventorize, develop and update   Water and Irrigation Master Plan/Profile.
  • Preliminary investigations– Identification of projects and feasibility studies
  • Surveys –  Digital Topographic survey and mapping

-      Socio-economic surveys

-      Soil surveys

-      Hydrological surveys

-      Environmental Impact Assessments Survey

-      Hydrogeological surveys / Geophysical for Boreholes/Dams

  • Project initiation and proposal development.
  • Project design, implementation and / or rehabilitation
  • Supervision of construction of Water /Irrigation/drainage/sewerage infrastructure (civil works).
  • Produce and Supply clean potable water
  • Development of Water resources and Catchments protection/conservation
  • Operation and Maintenance of water supplies
  • Advise the County in all matters pertaining to Water resources , sewerage and Irrigation Development


  • Assist in formation of WUA’s / WRUAs and formulation of by-laws.
  • Institutional strengthening and capacity building on water and irrigation projects
  • Hold General and Specialized Community /Farmers meetings

v  Integration and co-ordination of all collaborators/stakeholders.

v  Effective participatory monitoring and evaluation of projects.

v  Taking charge and efficient use of project resources.

v  Promote gender sensitive technology and enhance gender participation in planning and development.


The department uses participatory approach in community development.

15. Performance checks

v  Timeliness- projects are completed within set contract period.

v  Quality – High standards are not compromised and meet internationally recognized standards.

v  Cost- costs are contained and reasonable and within budget

v  Contractors are paid on time to avoid litigation