The Co-operative Bank of Kenya is among banks that are financing Water Fund investment programme, the Results-Based Financing (RBF).
RBF is a commercial financing facility that became operational in Water Sector Trust Fund (WSTF) in December 2014 after the government signed a Grant Subsidiary Agreement with the German Development Bank (KfW) and the World Bank.
The grants are provided by the Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA) through the KfW via the Aid on Delivery (AoD) programme for 1.36 million EUR and the World Bank Output-Based Aid (OBA) programme for 11.835 million USD.
To facilitate the uptake of the RBF subsidies, the water utilities’ projects are pre-financed with commercial loans from local lenders.
The RBF programme is currently working with three commercial banks, namely Sidian Bank, Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB) and Housing Finance, which have access to a 50 per cent guarantee provided by USAID.
Other banks, including Equity Bank, Family Bank and GT Bank, have also been approached by the Water Fund and have shown interest in financing the water utilities under the programme.
In recognition of the need to reduce grant financing for commercially viable water utilities and in order to introduce a new business model to water financing, the RBF programme is supporting water utilities that are investing in water supply and sanitation improvement projects in the low-income and underserved rural and urban areas in Kenya.
The WSPs are able to leverage loans from local financing institutions, which are then subsidised at a percentage of the project cost on attainment of agreed deliverables.
The primary beneficiaries of the projects under the RBF programme that have been reached out of the targeted 150,000 (until 2018) as of June 2016 are a total of 3,645 households or 21,650 people.
These are broken down as 16,940 people accessing individual water connections, 4,290 people accessing water kiosks, and 420 people accessing yard taps.
WaterFund is now a recipient of the prestigious 2021 United Nations Public Service Awards, after its Output-Based Aid Programme was selected as one of the winners under category of “Enhancing the effectiveness of public institutions to reach the SDGs.”
The up-scaling of basic sanitation for urban poor (UBSUP), implemented by the WaterFund emerged among top 10 institutions in the prestigious 2019 United Nations public service annual award.
The 2021 United Nations Public Service Awards ceremony took place in Dubai, United Arab Emirates from December 18, 2021, under the theme “Innovating the Future Public Service: New Government Models for a New Era to Reach the Sustainable Development Goals.”
It emerged top in the category of “Delivering Inclusive and Equitable Service To Leave No one Behind.” This award now places UBSUP in a better position for enhanced funding by donors.
The programme provides subsidy to landlords with Sh20,000 for a new toilet and Sh15,000 for rehabilitated toilets in urban areas where the poor live.
At hand to receive the award on behalf of the WaterFund was Ambassador Mary Khimulu, Chairlady WaterFund board.
The Kenya delegation included Cabinet Secretaries Margaret Kobia (Public Services and Gender) and Joe Mucheru (ICT) and Sidian Bank, one of the sponsors of WaterFund, was represented by Loice Mwangi, the bank’s Manager, Branches.
The United Nations Public Service Awards is the most prestigious international recognition of excellence in public service.
It rewards creative achievements and contributions of public service institutions that lead to a more effective and responsive public administration in countries worldwide.
Through an annual competition, the UN Public Service Awards promotes the role, professionalism and visibility of public service.
The UN Public Service Day intends to celebrate the value and virtue of public service to the community; highlight the contribution of public service in the development process; recognize the work of public servants, and encourage young people to pursue careers in the public sector.