CENTER’S TRAINING IN TSAVO BEARS FRUITS:FINDINGS FROM A FOLLOW-UP SURVEY

A follow-up survey was conducted through questionnaire interviews, administered to former participants of the WRUA training on IWRM, which had been implemented by JKUAT’s WARREC in April 2014. The follow up was conducted in November 2014 in the Tsavo river catchment, with participation of WRMA, Nolturesh Lumi Sub-regional office, Loitokitok.

It emerged that after the training, most WRUA leaders had implemented the knowledge of the training, and this had started to bear fruits.

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Feedback Workshop for the follow-up survey           Participants at the Feedback workshop in WRMA

offices,  Loitokitok

During the workshop in April 2014, the following were cited as the way forward:

  • Identify and map/peg the riparian land and wetlands within the Tsavo River Catchment.
  • All water users within the Tsavo River Catchment to work together for sustainable water resource management
  • Observe, examine and document water resources and management systems and technologies in the Tsavo River sub-catchment.
  • All the wetlands within the Tsavo River catchment to be gazetted by WRMA and this should involve all stakeholders in the catchment.
  • Water Resource management awareness creation within the Tsavo River Catchment to be done to all the WRUA members within three (3) months and for the entire community within one (1) year.
  • Kenya wildlife Service (KWS) to create awareness on compensations process in case of injury by wildlife to the community
  • The community should embrace soil and  water conservation techniques
  • The community should practice water harvesting as an additional source of water
  • Water Abstraction survey for the Nolutresh river to be initiated
  • Water allocation Plan for Rombo WRUA to be developed
  • To assess water use and demand within the Tsavo River sub-catchment and develop a water balance model for the catchment.

Speaking during the meeting, Nolturesh Lumi sub- region FMO Mr. J.G. Maina highlighted that a lot had been done since the workshop was held in April towards conserving the Tsavo sub-catchment has evident in various WRUAs.

According to Prof. Mati Director WARREC, the objective of the Follow-Up Survey on the WRUA Training in the Tsavo River Sub-Catchment, Kenya was to:

i.            To find out if the WRUA training conducted in April (13-17th) 2014 was utilized by participants.

ii.            To identify the main impediments of making use of the knowledge learnt.

iii.            To identify better ways of handling a similar exercise in future.

iv.            To determine entry points for future engagement with WRUAs in the Tsavo sub-catchment.

In their remarks, the WRUA/Ranch leaders also commended JKUAT-WARREC for the training for it equipped them with a lot of skills which had helped them improve the management of their catchments. Among the implemented activities reported are:

  1.  Awareness creation: As reported by all the WRUA/ranch leaders, after the workshop they have held several meeting in their WRUAs and sensitized the members on need for catchment conservation and sustainable approaches
  2. Gazettement of wetlands: Public consultation meetings have been held and others planned towards gazettement of Kimana wetland. It was noted that the people settling in the Kimana wetland are willing to vacate the area provided there is an alternative land.  A draft of the Kimana wetland management plan had been done and is under review and soon it will be presented to the stakeholders. However despite all these, finances were reported as the main challenge.
  3. Documentation: During the July 2014, an inventory of all water resources within Catchmnet 3N and 3G was done. This survey focused on shallow wells, boreholes and also on water quality. This was through the use of the mobile phone technology- Akvoflow.
  4. Pollution control: Enforcement done to solve the issue. About 16 water pumps had been confiscated and conditions of using the pumps at 10m from the water source given.
  5. Mobilization of farmers: Farmers in Empiron to Murtot had been mobilized on the construction of an electric fence to reduce destruction by wildlife. The meeting sought way forward on land use patterns, way leaves for fence and community contribution in terms on labour.
  6. Promotion of drip irrigation as an efficient water use technology. This is evident in Kisanjani area, Rombo, Kiwanja ya ndege, Namebk and Olchorro locations.
  7. Soil and water conservation: Soil and water conservation structures have been done in individual farms like cut off drains, terraces in Entonet, Kimana (upper area) and kuku.
  8. Water conflict resolution: Several meetings have been held in various WRUAs and have resolved to use water for irrigation only during the day and from evening until morning including weekends the water should flow for livestock and wildlife use.
  9. Assessment of water use and demand: JKUAT through WARREC had submitted a proposal to IGAD to carry out a water use and demand in the Tsavo although it not successful. More efforts still being done to secure funding for the study.
  10. Water harvesting: In Ilkisonko WRUA the people have been trained on water harvesting technologies like pans.
  11. Reduction in Charcoal burning: The practice has been controlled greatly as reported by all the WRUAs.
  12. Reduction in illegal abstraction and over abstraction: As observed in Kimana river where initially there were a lot of illegal pumps, the situation is now reversed as the practice has greatly been controlled.

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Illegal   pumping on River Kimana at Emali-Loitokitok road bridge during the workshop   (April 2014) Same spot on River Kimana after   removal of illegal pumps   (Nov 2014)

Reduced encroachment of water catchments: Through awareness creation, local people have reduced encroachment of riparian lands and catchment areas.

In her remarks, WARREC Director Prof. Bancy Mati commended the leaders and WRMA for the good work done within a short period in implementing the workshop deliberations. She also expressed her joy that a community that is caring about their catchment in the Tsavo now exists. As a way forward, Prof. Mati pointed out that:

  • Research institutes like WARREC/JKUAT have been set up to bridge the knowledge gap to respond to actual problems/needs on the ground.
  • The days of universities acting like ivory towers are gone and communities need   to seek research/scientific inputs to solve community problems and/or improve their welfare
  • Researchers/Professors should interact with practitioners at grassroots levels
  • WRUAs, Farmers, pastoralists are also researchers since they do trials quietly to solve their problems. Linking them with science can boost synergies.
  • There is need to build synergies between Researchers (e.g JKUAT), Government institutions (WRMA, MEWNR, MoA, NEMA, KWS, and KFS), Private sector (Hotels, Conservancies, Nolturesh Water Company) and practitioners (WRUAs, farmers, pastoralists, and traders) to achieve harmonious & sustainable water resources management.

In his closing remarks Mr. Musau Kimeu the ATCM-WRMA congratulated the members for having embraced the integrated water resource management approaches thought during the workshop. ‘Research is a key tool in catchment management and collaborations should be strengthen’ said Mr. Kimeu.

 

 

 

 

 

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