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Complaints of Pollution in River Tana, Kenya

People living along the banks of River Tana in Murang’a county have complained of massive pollution.

They have said a foul smell has been emanating from the river and the water has changed colour. They said they rely on the river for irrigation, fishing and their domestic use. Residents accused a tannery along the river in Sagana town of draining chemical effluents into the river. But officer in-charge of production at Sagana Tanneries Richard Chumo said the allegations were false.

Resident Peter Wachira said they have been suffering for the last one week, as they have to consume the water even in its polluted state. “We are concerned because we rely on this river for our livelihoods, through fishing and irrigation,” he said. Wachira urged the government to investigate the causes of the pollution and take immediate action against the polluters.

Thathawa Irrigation Water Project chairman Simon Gitau said it is inconsiderate for factories to drain waste into a river. He said they are afraid the chemicals could harm them.

Stuart Rankin

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