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Kinuthia Mwangi differs with Kiambu on clustering of water companies.

Former Transitional Authority Chairman Kinuthia Wa Mwangi.
Former Transitional Authority Chairman Kinuthia Wa Mwangi has opposed the idea of centralising water services as mooted by the in Kiambu County Government saying that the move will instead complicate water and sewerage services especially in the densely populated areas.

While admitting that some of the water companies in the county were not commercially viable, Kinuthia reckoned that sub-counties such as Kikuyu, Thika and Ruiru needed to run their own water companies due to the high number of people they served.

“The primary objective of devolution was to promote social and economic development and the provision of proximate, easily accessible services at the grassroots. As an expert in devolution, I will not sit down and watch people take us back to where we were before the new constitution. Let’s not spoil the gains we have already made by creating havoc,” said Kinuthia during an interview after attending the end of year party of THIWASCO staff.

Reacting to reports that the county government was planning to centralise all water companies within its jurisdiction with a view to salvage ailing companies that were making loses and unable to provide adequate and quality services to their clients, the former devolution boss argued that the limitations of this model were obvious and centralising water services will not solve the challenges faced by the companies that were operating in losses but compound the services of those that had outstanding services to their clients.

He added that Kenyans gave devolution a strong vote of confidence in the new constitutional dispensation against the backdrop of failures to deliver services that was the hallmark of the centralised government.

“Decentralisation increases effectiveness in service delivery. Each town should be allowed to run its own water company to enable them to offer more responsive public services attuned to local needs. 

(Related story) THIWASCO 1 billion programme to quench the thirst of Thika residents.)

"This is because every area has its own unique challenges and combining urban management with rural management will only cause more problems,” he said.

He instead asked the county government to seek solutions to salvage the ailing water companies and help them manage their water resources and services well so that they could contribute significantly to the people’s social and economic growth.

Kinuthia served the defunct Thika Municipality as the Town Clerk between 1979 and 1988. 

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