Kilifi leaders call for special power tariff to end Baricho works power outage

President Uhuru Kenyatta Kenyatta at Baricho Water Works in Malindi, Kilifi during the commission in 2016. PHOTO: COURTESY.

Kilifi, KENYA: Leaders from Kilifi County have called upon the national government to come up with a special power tariff to end the frequent Baricho Water Works power outage.

Led by Kilifi North MP Owen Baya and his Magarini counterpart Michael Kingi, the leaders on Thursday proposed to the Cabinet secretary for water Simon Chelugui to ensure its installation so as to guarantee a steady supply of electricity to the water station that serves Kilifi and Mombasa counties.

Currently, the Coast Water Services board pays sh40 million per month in power bills to run the pumps at the station.

Speaking during an inspection of the project at the Baricho lot 3 water project with the CS, Baya said the Ksh290 million water project will not solve the water problem if the Kenya Power issue will not be sorted out once and for all.

“The government is investing cripplingly in the Baricho lot 3 project which seeks to boost the water supply to Mombasa and Kilifi counties,” Baya said.

“Should the power issue not be sorted out once and for all, it will be useless if after spending all these millions to set up the project then we start struggling with Kenya power. We need a special tariff that will cut the cost of water to the consumers,” Baya added.

75 percent of Mombasa County gets its water supply from Baricho and the 25 percent from Mzima springs contrary to Kilifi County which gets 100 percent supply from Baricho.

The Baricho lot 3 is 90 percent complete and is expected to benefit 27000 people.

However, Chelugui said all stakeholders will convene a meeting to discuss and resolve on the power tariff issue.

He promised to consult with his energy counterpart for the pumping station to get a cheaper night tariff.

“Bamburi cement has a special night tariff and so we will ensure Baricho has the same for sustainable pumping. We are also reconnoitering the possibilities of employing renewable energy methods to run the station,” said Chelugui.