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State to construct dams along rivers prone to flooding

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Water and Irrigation Principal Secretary Ephantus Kimotho addresses the press in Thika after meeting residents of Maguguni, Thika East Sub County over the completion of Ksh 400 million Ndumago irrigation project

The government is in the process of mapping out rivers prone to flooding with a view to constructing dams and water pans to harness water for agricultural use.

Water and Irrigation Principal Secretary Ephantus Kimotho said during this rainy season, his department has established rivers including Athi and Tana where dams and water pans will be constructed to check flooding.

He said the dams will check the consequent wastage of water, destruction of property and even loss of lives.

Speaking after meeting residents of Maguguni, Thika East Sub County over the completion of Sh400 million Ndumago Irrigation project which has stalled for over 10 years, the PS said the dams will control breaking of river banks during heavy rains.

“During this season, we have mapped out rivers that are overflowing as well as seasonal ones with the intention of doing dams and water pans. The dams will not only control floods but will also provide water for irrigation. We are also doing some land reclamation activities,” said Kimotho.

Kimotho was accompanied by area MP Alice Ng’ang’a, officials from the National Irrigation Authority and local leaders.

On the Ndumago project, the PS said about 80 per cent of the project is already done adding that the remaining 20 per cent will commence next month.

He said Sh40 million for the completion of the project has already been set aside and called on residents to support it.

Once operational, he added, the irrigation project is set to benefit 1,500 farmers from the semi-arid area and is expected to generate half a billion shillings from agricultural earnings annually.

“This is a life changing project that once completed, will change the economy of this semi-arid region. It is expected to generate half a billion shillings from agricultural earnings annually which is huge impact,” Kimotho said.

He added that the government has undertaken the construction of several dams and water pans for irrigation in other areas of Kiambu county including, Gatundu, Lari and Kikuyu sub counties.

Ms Ng’ang’a said the project will improve the livelihoods of residents who over the years relied on rain fed agriculture.

She said through irrigation, residents will be assured of getting better yields and stop relying on relief food.

KNA
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