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Narok county using weholite technology to sort sanitation mess

By Derek Otieno
Monday, October 19th, 2020
Weholite technology.
In summary

Proper sanitation and storm water management remain as two of the major challenges for devolved governments in Kenya as they grapple to improve on service delivery to citizens.

Bringing innovative solutions and providing and maintaining safe off-site and decentralized sanitation systems, cannot happen without new investment and human technical capacity – particularly considering the growing population density in urban centers.

Narok has become the first in Kenya to employ a new solution in building a proper sanitation system in the county that previously lacked in this facility.

Through a partnership with a new entrant in the Kenyan market- Megapipes Solutions, Narok county is using high density polyethylene (HDPE) also known as weholite to set up the county’s sewage system.

Megapipes Solutions, is offering large diameter plastic pipes to meet the challenge of poor sanitation through the use of Weholite which has been tried and tested right across Europe, North America and in several African countries including Tanzania and South Africa.

Weholite is a lightweight, engineered structured wall pipe made from high density polyethylene (HDPE), and is used extensively around the world in low pressure or gravity applications for drinking water storage, storm water, sewage and various other liquids.

Polyethylene pipes, first installed in the 1950s, are known to be a reliable, long-term solution for water, stormwater and sanitary systems. Science has since proven that HDPE pipes, such as Weholite will last over 100 years.

“Weholite offers distinct chemical and physical advantages over other more traditional materials.

Superior hydraulics and abrasion resistance mean that it will not corrode or deteriorate over time, making it a long-lasting solution for projects in Kenya,” says Jürg Flühmann, Managing Director at Megapipes Solutions.

According to Mr. Flühmann new production techniques have been combined with the latest raw materials technology to produce a durable pipe system with superior load-bearing properties.

This makes Weholite the preferred solution for many municipal and industrial applications in both the public and private sector – including stormwater management, sewage treatment systems, culverts, marine pipelines and irrigation water distribution.

Narok county is looking ahead to this durable solution.

Narok, Water, Environment and Health minister John Kiyiapi says initially,  as a temporary solution, the county had set aside a quarry near the town as a disposal area but was later shut down last year by the National Environment Management Authority (Nema) after the quarry got full and was spilling into the adjacent Enkare Narok River.

“Although we had good temporary spaces that the county government had designated, the population of Narok is rapidly growing creating pressure on the disposal areas. Similarly, it became increasingly expensive for residents to keep using exhausters,” Mr Kiyiapi said.

“It is because of these reasons that the county resolved to invest in a quality sewer system that would be installed in little time with few man-power, would require very little maintenance and would have a long lifespan decades to come,” he added. 

The  Narok Water and Sewerage Company Managing Director Stanley Kuyioni says the sewer project would play a significant role in facilitating the development of the county, further noting the system are critical for the housing sector, health sector and urbanisation.

“Most of the diseases treated at our health centres and hospitals are wash related. Issues such as open defecation is a serious problem as there are no other available alternatives.

The project has, therefore, come at a good time and will greatly help the county achieve a good quality of life for its residents,” he added.

Weholite pipes will be readily available in Kenya with the construction of a factory for manufacturing of the large diameter plastic pipes for drainage and sanitation Projects in Kenya and neighboring countries, already under way in Ruiru in Kiambu county.

Megapipes will be manufacturing innovative, state-of-the-art products for the growing requirements of water storage, sanitation and drainage projects in Kenya, contributing to the local economy and industrialization process and avoiding importation of such products.