In Kenya’s third largest city, Kisumu, the proximity of Lake Victoria does not ensure access to clean water for the 600,000 residents. The existing structures – precarious pumping and treatment plants, built decades ago – supply less than half the amount needed to sustain the populace.
In response, the government through Lake Victoria South Water Works Development Agency (LVSWWDA) will complement and improve the first investments in the water and sanitation network in Kisumu. LVSWWDA is seeking to rehabilitate Dunga Treatment Plant at KShs 900 Million, to improve water supply and sanitation services.
The proposed works will involve the improvement of Dunga Raw Water Intake and Treatment, transmissions system and Water Treatment Plant. The Works will consist of improvement of the intake and pump station, construction of raw water rising main and rehabilitation of Dunga Water Treatment Plant. Works at the intake will involve installation of pumps and accessories, installation of KPLC power supply including transformer upgrading for lighting.
Research on the water sector in Kisumu City shows that water production is not keeping pace with the rapid population growth and that, in any case, the existing infrastructure is operating at between 85 and 93 percent of maximum design capacity.
At the Water Treatment Plant, a number of improvements will be carried out on the collection and distribution chambers, sedimentation tanks, filter units and treated water collection channels. Pipes connections and fittings within the treatment works units will also be harmonized and improved.
According to the agency’s, Environmental and Social Impact Assessment- June 2021
Final Report, despite having an installed capacity of 15,000 cubic metres per day, the facility which was designed for a population of 15,000. Part of the recommendations is to create a buffer zone around the intake and treatment facilities as a way of managing land use conflicts. The agency plans to construct prefabricated reinforced concrete structure as barrier against the stubborn aquatic weed.
Water treatment capacity within Kisumu is at 80,000 cubic metres with Dunga Treatment Plant at 44,000 cubic metres while Kajulu at 36,000 cubic metres respectively. Currently, we produce 40% from Dunga Treatment Plant through pumping and 60% from Kajulu treatment plant.
There are also small-scale community water and sanitation service providers. Most of the water in Kisumu is obtained from Lake Victoria, with a small percentage extracted from the Kibos River. Other rivers include Nyamasaria, Kisian, Kajulu, Mamboleo, Luanda and Lidango.
There are also two water supply systems: an electrical pump system, supplying about 92 percent of the total water, and a gravity system. The water from Lake Victoria is treated at the Dunga Water treatment plant, located 0.6 km from the intake, and is then pumped to a storage tank in Kibuye, while the water from the Kibos River is treated and then flows to a reservoir.
In the past, efforts to improve water supply have nonetheless focused on surface water, mainly because groundwater is susceptible to contamination by overflowing pit latrines and inadequate drainage. LVSWWDA is seeking partnership from the national government, AFD, EU Africa Infrastructure Trust Fund and the European Investment Bank.