Nairobi taps to run dry for two days


Nairobi residents will brace for two days without water following a shutdown of one of the city’s water treatment facilities.

The Nairobi City Water and Sewerage Company (NCWSC) announced on Monday that it will close the Ngethu Water Treatment Plant on Tuesday and Wednesday to allow for the connection of a new pipeline.

“This will facilitate interconnection of the new Kiambu-Embakasi pipeline to the Ngethu Gigiri transmission pipeline at Kiambu Reservoir in readiness to transfer water to Embakasi, Mihago, Utawala and Ruai areas once the Northern Collector Tunnel project is completed in June 2022,” said Nairobi Water managing director Nahashon Muguna in a notice to customers.

Some of the main customers to be affected by the shutdown include the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, Kenyatta University, University of Nairobi, Athi River’s Export Processing Zone and the entire city centre and Industrial Area.

Residents of city suburbs along Mombasa Road, Juja Road, Outering, Lang’ata, Kangundo, James Gichuru, Waiyaki Way, Naivasha, Kikuyu and Limuru roads will also go without water for 36 hours.

“We appeal to our customers for indulgence and also urge them to use available water sparingly as we work towards restoring the supply,” he said.

This year alone, city residents have had to endure at least six water supply interruptions by the urban water utility firm in February, May, June, July and September for infrastructural upgrades.

Nairobi has been experiencing water rationing since April 2017 forcing most residents to turn to water from boreholes or those supplied at exorbitant prices by water vendors.

Only about 50 percent of Nairobi residents have direct access to piped water while the rest depend on water from kiosks, vendors, illegal connections, or from boreholes.

But even those with direct access to piped water, only 40 percent of this lot receive water 24 hours per day with the rest for only 11 hours on average.