Power and love battles at the graft ridden Coast Water Works Development agency have now hit a point of no return with the top leadership now engaged in an all-out war that has now attracted the attention of the ministry in Nairobi.
The titanic battle over donor billions and millions of government allocations involve head of procurement Stanlus Jira,head of finance Stephen Masai who have apparently teamed up to oust reigning Chief Executive Officer Martin Tsuma.
This is happening at a time the ravaging challenges of water scarcity in the five coastal counties have left many families disgruntled and helpless.
The new battle that is strategic to attract suitors from the national government for ore dirty deals has now seen Mr Jira and Masai unexpectedly team up with vigor and they are believed to have made frantic efforts to water Cabinet Secretary Alice Wahome to effect the removal of ‘out of favor’ C.E.O Mr Tsuma.
Also at the centre of the fiasco is a telenovela-like love triangle that has a notorious supplier known as Hadassah and has been christened as an irresistible beauty in the corridors of power and multi-million tender cartels.
Another officer in the mix is one Ben Kai who reportedly bought an apartment for Esther P. Thongori commonly referred by many as Hadassah at Zawadi in Bamburi to the dismay of Jira and Masai who have also tabled love proposals to the ever generous scavenging supplier.
But Jira is believed to have made insurmountable progress in luring Hadassah to his way, thanks to his position as the procurement that offers a win-win situation to both parties.
The wrangles at the agency that has been in the headlines for wrong reasons has attracted the attention of Principal Secretary to the State Department for Water and Sanitation Kipronoh Ronoh who is now pursuing possible changes in all state funded water agencies.
The PS who is following up on the recently launched program for Kenyans living in arid and semi-arid areas to benefit from 10,000 water projects that will ease acute shortages has said that the coastal region is also a huge area of concern.
“We have come up with a number of interventions which we believe, if implemented, could help the country address the immediate problem of water scarcity.” The PS said
Ronoh was speaking at a workshop with chief executive officers and heads of departments of water development agencies. For the last three months, the water agency in question has been on the wrong side of media publications, among them water shortages in several parts of Mombasa, Kwale and Kilifi despite receiving billions of donor funds and government allocations.
In March, some civic organizations reportedly wrote to investigative agencies to probe possible misappropriation of funds set aside for construction of water distribution pipelines and sanitation facilities in Mombasa. It was just a fortnight ago when Mombasa Governor Abdhulswamad Nassir warned water agencies in the region to get their act right or close shop. Kilifi and Kwale residents in January called on the state to initiate changes in water agencies in the region where they cited massive corruption. “There have been promises after promises and despite the many water projects that have been launched over the years,all we read is how many have been stolen and how contractor X and Z have not been paid or have abandoned work,” a furious resident from Taita Taveta Anthony Kazungu said. Cabinet Secretary for Water, Sanitation and Irrigation Alice Wahome is believed to be following proceedings at the CWWDA especially after receiving directions from President William Ruto that all water projects at the coast whether donor funded or government funded must be finished within the stipulated time.