The role of evaluating, recommending and approving water tariffs based on consideration of consumer protection standards belongs to WASREB. Costs should therefore not go up arbitrarily. Revision of tariffs has to be approved by WASREB.
Every WSP is required to establish a mechanism for handling customer complaints which meets the standards set by the regulatory board. Some utilities already have mechanisms such as hotlines and SMS codes.
County governments are responsible for establishment of WSPs on behalf of the public.
Besides the Constitution of Kenya (2010) guaranteeing all Kenyans the right to clean, safe, adequate water, it provides that water and sanitation services should be undertaken by county governments. The roles and responsibilities for the management, development and regulation of water resources and water services have therefore been changed in accordance with the Constitution and hence the reforms.
Water and sanitation services reforms are guided by the Water Act, 2016.
The National Water Harvesting and Storage Authority
National Water Harvesting and Storage Authority (NWHSA) was established under the Water Act 2016, as an autonomous agency reporting to the Ministry of Water and Sanitation. It was previously known as the National Water Conservation and Pipeline Corporation (NWCPC). Its mandate is to develop water works and storage infrastructure, flood control, information dissemination and develop water harvesting strategies.
The Water Tribunal
The mandate of the Water Tribunal, formerly known as the Water Appeals Board is resolution of disputes relating to water.
Water Sector Trust Fund
The Water Sector Trust Fund (WSTF) formerly the Water Services Trust Fund, is a State Corporation. The mandate of the WSTF is to provide conditional and unconditional grants to the counties and to assist in financing the development of and management of water services in the marginalised and underserved areas.
The are two institutions involved in water and sanitation services provision at the regional level namely Basin Water Resources Committees (BWRCs) and Water Works Development Agencies (WWDAs).
Basin Water Resources Committees (BWRCs)
Once established, these will be committees of WRA whose members will be drawn from stakeholders within the basin and aim to achieve wide stakeholder participation in the management of water resources at the basin level.
Water Works Development Agencies (WWDAs)
The 2016 Water act defines national public water works as water works whose water resource is: cross county in nature, financed out of the national government share of national revenue and intended to serve a function of the national government. WWDAs are responsible for development and management of national public water Works.
There are two institutions that are responsible for regulation of water and sanitation services. These are the Water Services Regulatory Board (WASREB) and the Water Resources Authority (WRA).
The Water Services Regulatory Board (WASREB)
The Water Services Regulatory Board (WASREB) is a non-commercial State Corporation established in March 2003 as part of the comprehensive reforms in the water sector. WASREB’s mandate is to oversee the implementation of policies and strategies relating to provision of water and sewerage services.
The Water Resources Authority
The Water Resources Authority, which is a state corporation is an agent of the national government. It has the mandate of regulating the management and use of water resources including regulation, protection of water bodies, public information and management of water related climate adaptation interventions.
Management of water sector reforms is being undertaken at both the national and county governments in line with the Water Act, 2016.
The national government is responsible for policy formulation and regulation of water and sanitation services.
Sources: Information for this FAQs brief has been substantially derived from The World Bank’s brief: Understanding the Water Act, 2016 as well as websites of the respective water institutions.