NAIROBI, Kenya: June 26 (Xinhua) — Kenya will launch a 280 million-U. S. dollar water project in December aimed at ensuring that its capital city Nairobi is fully self-sufficient in water, a government official said on Tuesday.

Ministry of Water Director of Water Services Peter Mangiti told Xinhua in Nairobi that the Nairobi Water Northern Collector Project (NWNCP) is designed to provide an additional 160,000 cubic meters of water daily to Nairobi and its environs.

“The 280 million dollars donor funded water project aims at bridging Nairobi’s water deficit and will be completed by end of 2015,” Mangiti said on the sidelines of the Eight Annual Athi Water Services Board Stakeholders Workshop.

He said that the government will inject between 10 to 15 percent of total project cost of additional funds to ensure that the project is fully implemented. The water ministry said that the World Bank will provide 150 million dollars, French Development Agency (AFD) 124 million dollars while German Development Agency (KFW) will provide six million dollars towards the completion of the NWNCP.

He said that the project is phase one of Nairobi’s water master plan which will be complete by the end of 2035. “Part of the funds will be used to bring water from rivers in the surrounding area into the dam that supplies the majority of Nairobi’s water supplies,” he said.

AFD Program Officer Anthea Manasseh said that AFD board will approve the 124 million dollars financial assistance later this year. She added that the NWNCP will also assist Kenya to capture surface and ground water for the benefit of city residents.

“The effects of climate change have led to prolonged dry seasons which result in severe water shortages in the country and this calls for water harvesting,” the AFD official said.

She added that the project plans to develop new water sources for Nairobi and satellite towns. Water Ministry Permanent Secretary David Stower said in the past 3 years, the government has spent 12 million dollars to develop water and sanitation infrastructural projects in city’s informal settlements.

The water ministry also plans to ensure that 8 million more people in urban and a similar number in rural areas will have access to safe water by 2015.

“The government has also set a target of ensuring an additional 7.2 million urban residents and 6.4 million people in rural areas have access to basic sanitation in the same period,” Stower said. (Xinhua)

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