Esther Nyambura Muiruri, a resident of Sabasaba area in Murang’a South town in Tana County, is the proud head of a household that was recently connected to tap water, thanks to the Output-Based Aid (OBA) programme of the WSTF.

Murang’a South Water and Sanitation Company (MUSWASCO), an urban water utility in Tana County, became the first water utility to access an OBA subsidy facility under the WSTF. “We were much honoured to be the first water utility in Kenya to receive a subsidy under the OBA programme”, says Mary Nyaga, the Managing Director of MUSWASCO.

The OBA subsidy facility is offered under the Results-Based Financing (RBF) programme administered by the WSTF. A total of 11.835 million USD was extended to the Government of Kenya as a grant by the Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA) through the World Bank programme, for a period of three and a half years.

“I am happy to be among the first beneficiaries of an individual water connection in Sabasaba under the MUSWASCO OBA programme. I no longer have to walk long distances to fetch water to wash my dishes. I can simply open the tap in my kitchen,” says the happy Muiruri.

MUSWASCO was pre-financed by Sidian Bank through a commercial loan facility for KES 17.58 million to introduce and improve infrastructure in the three areas of Kenol, Sabasaba and Kabati with a target to provide 1,500 individual water connections. The project, which began in September 2014, was fully completed in July 2015. From the KES 17.6 million, MUSWASCO received a total of KES 12.5 million from the Water Fund, as 60% subsidy under the OBA programme towards the repayment of its loan. This reduced the principal loan facility to KES 5.1 million.

“Despite accessing the loan at a high interest rate of 17% per annum, the subsidy is now making it very easy for the water utility to repay the balance of the loan over the next 60 months,” says Nyaga.

The OBA facility, which is running from December 2014 to June 2018, is targeting water utilities that are investing in water and sanitation projects aimed at urban low income areas in Kenya. The OBA programme is contributing to the SDG 6 in Kenya, which is to ensure the availability and the sustainable management of water and sanitation for all.

“My children can now go to school on time as they no longer spend hours fetching water from rivers and dams. Also they no longer suffer from diarrhoea as the water is now very clean.” 
Esther Nyambura Muiruri

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