COUNTY APPOINTS TEN FOR RURAL AND URBAN WATER COMPANIES BOARD OF DIRECTORS

COUNTY APPOINTS TEN FOR RURAL AND URBAN WATER COMPANIES BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Eldoret, 14th May 2024

The County Government of Turkana has announced the appointments of Philip Aemun Ebei, Christopher Aletia Imana, Margaret Kuchal, Francis Elim Ngikito, and John Ekaale Aruma to the Board of Directors of the newly formed Turkana Urban Water Company.

Paul Erot Merinyang’, Akolong Godfrey Ikone, Shadrak Esinyen Lopeyok, Elizabeth Ngikala Andrew, and Hashim Kerio Lokalei were also appointed to a similar capacity in the Turkana Rural Water Company.

The appointees were issued with their letters of appointment to serve for an initial period of three years by Turkana’s Deputy Governor, Dr. John Erus, at Eldoret, where the team joined other boards of water companies in Samburu and West Pokot for an induction and Good Governance training facilitated by the Water Services Regulatory Board (WASREB).

The County Government, UNICEF, USAID STAWI, and USAID LMS, through the ACDI-VOCA program, jointly supported the capacity enhancement training.

Deputy Governor Dr. Erus said that the boards are expected to oversee the management of water provision and utilisation in line with Turkanas’ needs for domestic, agricultural, institutional, livestock development, and commercial use in their respective jurisdictions.

Citing the National Water Act 2016 and the Turkana County Water Act 2019 as legal guides, the Deputy Governor emphasised the need for continuous engagement with state agencies, especially the Water Services Regulatory Board (WASREB).

“It is the intention of Turkana Governor Jeremiah Lomorukai and I to ensure that critical services like water are readily available to all; for that reason, the entire County administration will stand by and facilitate you to deliver your mandate,” DG Erus assured the appointees.

According to the Deputy Governor, the appointments are a significant step towards laying a water governance structure in which all the existing water services providers (WSPs), including LOWASCO, will be aligned either with urban or rural water companies, depending on location.

Director of Monitoring and Enforcement at WASREB, Richard Cheruiyot, added that the National Water Act of 2016 mandated the county to establish water service providers. “And I believe Turkana has taken the right direction by creating Rural and Urban Water Companies as part of that mandate,” he said.

Director Cheruiyot added that the laws anticipated the dynamics in which bigger WSPs are formed by the Counties and suggested a way for the existing water service providers to sign service provision agreements to monitor performance.

Director Cheruiyot advised the new appointees to prioritise the acquisition of a WASREB-approved license as a water service provider before undertaking anything else.

Deputy Chief of Party of USAID STAWI, Ronald Kubasu, confirmed the organisations’ commitment to support the new Boards of Directors as they embark on the task ahead of them.

The boards have nomination of respective chairs – Philip Ebei Aemun is the chair of the Turkana Urban Water Company, while Paul Erot Merinyang’ is the chair of the Turkana Rural Water Company.

The appointees were chosen from a shortlist that was interviewed by a selection committee led by Mary Lomojo early this year.

The DG was accompanied by Water Services CECM Patrick Losike Lokaimoe, Deputy County Secretary Dr. Locham Gamoe, Chief Officer Water Services Simon Etom, County Solicitor Ruth Emanikor, Water Services Fund Board chair Emily Ariong and LOWASCOs’ MD Esther Lokitoe.

It is expected that the new Boards will be have inaugral meetings to set the ball rolling, including a formal unveiling to the public by the Governor.

TOBONGU LORE

13TH-14TH AUGUST 2024