Nyandarua leaders are demanding compensation from counties depending on it for water supply, including Nairobi.
Led by Governor Francis Kimemia, County Assembly Speaker Wahome Ndegwa, Kinangop lawmaker Kwenya Thuku and a host of MCAs, the leaders said that more than 14 counties get water from Nyandarua county yet locals have no clean water for domestic use.
“It’s unacceptable that we are only involved in forest conservation yet our people do not benefit from forest resources including water from the Aberdares. Our saw millers must be considered and given a priority when issuing tree harvesting licences. Our people do not get a single drop of water from the forest, it all goes to Nairobi,” said Njabini MCA Kiiru Gachomba.
Mr Ndegwa said the law was clear that a community must benefit from natural resources around it, but it has not been the case for Nyandarua county residents.
“It’s a historical injustice that must be addressed. It’s a shame that the community surrounding Sasumua dam, which supplies water to Nairobi — a community involved in the conservation of the forest and Sasumua river — has no water in their homes.
“Not a single member of the community neighbouring the dam is employed there,” said Mr Ndegwa.
The governor said that the county intends to build water treatment plants and will not supply the commodity to Nairobi and other counties unless they agree to pay levies and invest in community development projects.
“We supply water to over 14 counties including Nairobi and Nakuru — all the way to Wajir— but our people do not benefit from the resource.
“We want the same treatment Turkana people get from their oil, the same benefits communities surrounding the Maasai Mara National Park get, the law should not be applied selectively,” said Mr Kimemia.
Nyandarua supplies water to other counties including Coast and parts of northern Kenya.