When shall we tap all this water going to waste ?

Masinga Dam excess water being released to avoid flooding in the locality

Last weekend I travelled to Garissa for a family function.

A couple of weeks ago I did ask on this same forum the best route to take .

Going I opted to hit Mombasa Road till Kibwezi and took right turn to Kitui. I must commend GOK for the beautiful road and what a pleasure and the scenery.

I am not a stranger to Kamba land since I attended both O and A level in Eastern province. Mutomo , Kitui and Mwingi were places that are familiar but the road then was rough and dusty.

Last week was all wet and rain and at some point we had to cross a very swollen river ( bridge was intact ) which was Athi River and I could not believe how much water Almighty God had sent our way . We even prayed for rain early this year at the height of biting drought.

The road construction is ongoing with a few miles to go to Kitui town . Some chap even directed me to some short cut where a stream was flowing to bypass the road diversion. I decided to follow the rest of the motorists to avoid becoming one of the motorists who followed the advice of a guy in the middle of nowhere.

The road from Kitui to Mwingi was also very good. I was pleasantly surprised with Mwingi which looked quite neat and well kept. It was also nice to see some good eateries that have come up since the last time I was in this part of our beautiful country.

The stretch from Mwingi to Garissa used to be a good road but security was never that good but not anymore . We drove to Garissa without any issues as dusk set in.

Well Garissa was pitch dark since street lights were not functioning due to some dispute between Garissa County and our usual suspects Kenya Power . Garissa County has some work to do.

Why am I narrating this ?

While I criss crossed from Mombasa. Kilifi. Kwale. Taita Taveta . Makueni . Kitui and Garissa county and on my return Tana River County I saw no evidence of water harvesting in pans and small dams. Those are 8 counties.

The only county where I saw some attempt of water harvesting was along Mwingi Garissa Road.

All these counties I mentioned are water stressed counties. Why is it so difficult to deliberately dam some of these seasonal streams and use this water in drier months ?

When you fly across Europe, USA and even many parts of Asia you will not fail to see the hundreds of water pans everywhere . Once you do that you simply pump the water to a higher level and you give your people uninterrupted supply of water year old round both for farming and domestic use. I thought GOK/ Jubilee to deliver on agriculture as a Big 4 , water is a critical success factors. Bore hole is NOT a solution.

I believe even CDF and the county goverment should be able to do simple water pans to harvest all the water that is going to waste.

It took vision in the 70’s and very early 80’s for the Seven Forks dam to generate power. The people living around the dam will tell you about the micro weather that has resulted from such mass of water.

The same can be replicated downstream. We are currently losing all the top soil that is swept to the ocean . The red soil is destroying our corals in the ocean which helps to keep the balance .

Looking at the water gushing out of Masinga going to waste is one BIG failure by successive regimes.

Ukambani Garissa and most parts of coast should not be facing drought every other year when God give is so much water. God gave us brain to think and work around the challenges we face.

Kenya is not short of resources , leadership is what is failing is from national to county level.

Folks we just can’t continue leaving such good rains to go to waste and 9 months later we are praying to God to help us deal with drought, Well God will be upset with us.

These are challenges but we can surmount them.

Well as always I choose to remain an optimist

Mohammed Hersi

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