African Press International (API)

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Land acquisition hampering Kenya’s implementation of EAC related projects, according to PS Segor

Posted by African Press International on September 25, 2016

By Dickens Wasonga.

Implementation of water and sanitation projects in the Kenyan side is slowed down by the challenges of land acquisition.

A meeting attended by permanent sectaries from the five East African states was told that implementation of the projects had been affected by the land problem as some land owners resist implementation.

However, the Kenyan PS , Professor Fred Segor who who singled out the land issue as a challenge said the government was working with relevant agencies to address the problem.

The EAC ,through the Lake Victoria Basin commission has been spearheading implementation of many projects within the Basin which amongst others include community driven development projects, water and sanitation projects, conservation efforts in areas such as mount Elgon,Mara River in Kenya and other such projects in the partner States.

So far through the coordination of LVBC, several sewerage systems have been rehabilitated and also new ones initiated in a bid aimed at boosting good sanitation practices.

In Kenya for example, the commission has supported the rehabilitation of sewers in Homa Bay, Kisii, and in Bomet at a cost of billions of shillings.

A total of 376 community driven development projects that engage in beer keeping, tree planting, dairy farming amongst other income generating activities have been funded across the region.

The commission also has scaled up efforts to enhance safety and security of navigation within the lake and three months ago it handed over navigation equipment worth millions of shillings to each of the partner states that shares Lake Victoria in 37 navigation sites.

The lake has in the past witnessed upsurge of deaths resulting from drowning incidents of mainly fishermen.

Kenya played host to the fifth joint steering committee meeting of the PSs and senior staff of the commission which reviews progress made and identify gaps so as to suggest best way forward in terms of how to sacale up implementation of the projects suggested.

Speaking at the opening ceremony the LVBC executive secretary Dr Said Ally Matano said alot of milestones had been achieved by the EAC body but suggested the need to establish strong national and regional coordination units and allow the permanent secretaries to provide strategic direction only.

This would speed up operationalization of various MOUs and other agreements and protocols already ratified.

Dr Matano said the commission will be leading a team of officials to negotiate a 3 billion shillings funding deal with its partners in Nairobi next week. The money will be used to finance additional development projects in the Basin.

The Tanzanian PS who chaired the meeting said regional meetings were essentially important and was the best approach while dealing with transboundary matters which are normally complex and sensitive.

African Press International

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