Home NEWS County News Murang’a water firm set to hike tariffs

Murang’a water firm set to hike tariffs

Gatanga Water and Sanitation Company is set to adjust tariffs from July 1, this year to increase the firm’s revenue.

During a public participation meeting held on Wednesday stakeholders gave the firm a nod to hike tariffs to get more revenue to facilitate better service delivery.

Channel 1

The company through its board, explained it was aiming to collect revenue amounting to Ksh.41.6 million to enable the water firm to improve and expand its infrastructure.

During the forum organised by the Water Services Regulatory Board (Wasreb) in a local hotel, it was agreed the new tariffs would run for the next five years, up to 2029.

Customers who utilise less than a unit of water per month will be exempted from paying for the service.

In the proposal, the water company proposes that the minimum water charges for 1 to six units of water be raised from Ksh.33 to Ksh.120.

Chairing the public participation session, Bishop Julius Wanyoike stated the firm needs increased revenue to put in place new water infrastructure.

He explained that some water pipes were installed 50 years ago and currently are rusty and weak hence the need for replacement.

“Some water infrastructure we have are worn-out, we need more funds to do overhaul and put in place new water pipes among other equipment that will enable our company to supply water effectively to many households,” noted Wanyoike who heads Thika ACK Diocese.

The firm’s tariffs, Bishop Wanyoike said were last reviewed 15 years ago, hence the need to focus on the reduction of production cost of the commodity to supply more water.

“The operations costs of the water company depend on many aspects, among them electricity, and labour expenses,” said the Bishop adding that the company was likely to close down due to a shortage of finances.

However, some local MCAs led by Moses Gachui (Kihumbuini) opposed the hiking of tariffs until the firm distributes water to the majority of local households.

Gachui who is also the Deputy Speaker of Murang’a County Assembly opposed the new tariffs saying hiking of the charges should be put on hold until when the locals will have enough water.

“It is illogical for the company to adjust the tariffs upwards with that big margin. I will invite members of the county assembly committee on water to carry out investigations about the new tariffs,” he said.

Sentiments of Gatanga MP Edward Muriu presented in the forum indicated his rejection of the proposed tariffs saying many residents were yet to access water.

He asked the board to drop the idea since only 20pc of Gatanga households are connected to piped water saying his office is championing to have more water projects that will ensure the majority of residents are connected to clean domestic water.

In the proposal, the company projects that units between seven and 20 be hiked to Ksh.135 up from Ksh.50, as 21 units to 51, be billed at Ksh.150 from the current Ksh.65.

Those using over 101 units to 300 will be subjected to pay Ksh.190 from Ksh.130 they were paying; public school charges for units from 0 to 600 have been adjusted to Ksh.135 up from Ksh.40.

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