A case in Nyeri where over 7,000 residents of Mathira sub-county have gone to court demanding rights to have access to water from Ragati dam highlights an issue that has been ignored for long.
Water, as the saying goes, is life yet increases in human population, haphazard development and environmental degradation have conspired to limit access to, and availability of water. Most homes in urban areas run on dry taps because water supply is barely able to meet demand as urban areas expand.
Gone are the days when water scarcity was viewed as the problem of the arid and semi-arid areas of Kenya. Today, even water catchment areas like the Mau Forest have been so degraded through deforestation and human activity that water is fast becoming a rarity. Herein lays the problem.
We are headed into a situation where, unless deliberate action is taken now to mitigate destruction of Mother Nature and conserve our water towers, community fights over scarce water resources are likely to be experienced.
History is replete with wars fought over water rights and because history offers lessons, both levels of government; County and National must learn from it and save the country the agony of strife over water.