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Uproar over sharp water rate rise

Nairobi, March 9, 2023. Players in the agriculture sector in Kenya have petitioned the Government to reconsider proposals to increase water rates by up to 1000 percent.

Leaders drawn from various industry organizations told the Senate water committee the increase will overburden an already sagging sector that is smarting under the prolonged drought and other production costs.
Agriculture Sector Network Chair, Dr Bimal Kantaria, led a powerful team to meet the Senate Agriculture Committee to discuss the impact of the implementation of the Water Resources Regulations 2021.

Lake Naivasha Growers Group Chief Executive Officer, Joseph Kariuki presented a petition on behalf of the lake farmers.
The Ministry of Water through Water Resources Authority (WRA) is imposing a 1000 per cent increase in the rate for water fees for livestock farmers from Kshs 0.5 to Kshs 5 per cubic meter.

On the other hand they are imposing an increase in water use fee for Irrigation by over 400 per cent from Ks 0.5 to Ksh 2.5 per cubic meter.

Both the private sector players and the Senate agree water is critical for the country, therefore, the Senate Committee committed to raise the issue with the Ministry of Water and provide feedback.
Other issues raised included high cost of fertilizer.
Kenya has 11 new NPK blending companies and this will reduce over reliance on imported fertilizers.

Present in the meeting was Peter Njonjo -Vegpro Group, Johnstone Mulary- Kenya Flower Council Sophie Simiyu – Fresh Produce Exporters of Kenya, Wesley Siele -Agriculture Employers Association, Khalif Abey – Kenya Camel Association, Divinah Mosota- Kenya National Federation of Farmers.
Present from the Committee were Senators Munyi Mundigi, Daniel Maanzo, Allan Chesang, Beth Syengo, and Wafula Wakoli.

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