, NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 7 – The Nairobi County government has received a grant worth Sh1.13 billion from Belgium to revamp its fire fighting services department.
Speaking during the signing ceremony on Thursday, Governor Evans Kidero said that part of the money will go towards buying fire-fighting vehicles and communication equipment that will increase the effectiveness of the department.
Kidero also indicated that part of the funds will be used to train the personnel and is expected to reduce their response time to disasters.
“Given the experiences we have had recently, this equipment will go a long way in helping us combat problems like the ones we had at the airport, Westgate, Herufi House and many more like these. The quantity of this equipment was arrived at after studying Nairobi and determining the needs in terms of management,” he said.
He said that about 11 water trucks will also be included in the initiative.
“We will get two fire command vehicles, two service vehicles, seven rapid intervention vehicles, one turntable ladder and about 300 personal protection equipment sets,” Governor Kidero explained.
He further outlined plans for the county to undertake a recruitment exercise of about 200 professional fire fighters.
“We will be carrying out recruitment of professionals to join this department. You cannot be a fire fighter if you are a mercenary so we will be looking for people who have their priorities right,” he stated.
The Homa Bay County Government has in the meantime outlined plans to upgrade more than 10 of its key roads at a cost of Sh3.3 billion.
Homa Bay Governor Cyprian Awiti said infrastructural development will be top on his development agenda. Awiti reiterated his commitment in ensuring the region has good infrastructure which will be of benefit to the county residents.
Among the roads to be upgraded includes the two ring roads serving Mfangano and Rusinga Islands of Lake Victoria.
Awiti indicated that this will be the first time the islanders will enjoy the comfort of using bitumen roads since the country attained its independence.
The major roads upgrade comes barely a fortnight after a Chinese construction firm started building a bridge to replace the Mbita causeway which is being demolished to allow the free flow of water on Lake Victoria.