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Season two of water wars coming in 2019, says Wa Iria



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Murang’a Governor Mwangi Wa Iria has promised the directors of five water companies in the county to prepare for a vicious battle come January 2019, vowing to sustain his intention to take over the management of the firms.

Speaking Monday, the governor, who has been at loggerheads with the chairmen and the directors of the water firms in the county for the last two years, said he cooled down towards the end of this year “to allow his rivals in the water sector to enjoy Christmas and new year celebrations” but vowed to revive his war with them next year.

Speaking at Ihura Stadium when he donated foodstuffs to over 1,000 locals mostly the disadvantaged, the aged and the disabled, the county chief said his push to take over the management of the water companies is unstoppable and will be done “with vigour and energy” come 2019.

“I have been persistent on taking over the management of the water firms since it is one of my devolved functions but I cooled down to allow those illegally holding the offices to enjoy the Christmas and the new year festivities. But let them brace for a tough round two which will be the final blow to them,” he told the locals.

Mr Wa Iria has, through a gazette notice, replaced the chairmen of the water companies who include business tycoon Peter Munga. But the governor’s appointees are yet to occupy the offices.

While announcing that he has assented into law the Murang’a Water Act, 2018, the governor said the law must be followed to the letter and that it gives him the direct mandate to have a say in the water sector in the county, which he claimed has been run by cartels over the years.

He said the law aims to give water at an affordable rate to Murang’a residents who have been receiving huge bills yet they are low income earners.

“Most of the constituents have been paying exaggerated water levies and yet they don’t use water for large scale purposes and are poor and vulnerable. But I, with the new law, will take over the management and straighten up things,” he said.

At the same time, the county boss announced that his administration has set aside Sh17 million to cater for the education of needy but bright students who have been admitted to public boarding schools.

He said MCAs and the church will be used to select and identify the bright students whose families cannot raise fees for the schools they have been admitted to so as to ensure that the process is not abused by “some rogue individuals”.

The distribution of relief food to the locals for the festivities will see 10,000 people benefit according to Mr Wa Iria.