news in brief

The Netherlands announces $50 million contribution to WSSCC for global sanitation coverage

Netherlands announces 50 m USD commitment to WSSCCNetherlands announces 50 m USD commitment to WSSCCThe funding will enable WSSCC, the only part of the United Nations devoted solely to the sanitation and hygiene needs of the most vulnerable people around the world, to empower 5 million additional people to access improved sanitation by 2020.

“In 2015, the Netherlands pledged to achieve universal access to water for 30 million people and sanitation for 50 million people by 2030,” said Mark Rutte, Prime Minister of the Netherlands, in a video shown at Global Citizen’s World on Stage event held in New York City at the NYU Skirball Center. “And today I’m proud to announce that the Government of the Netherlands will be donating 50 million dollars to the Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council to foster our joint efforts!”

Water Crisis in Bangladesh

Water Crisis in BangladeshThe WHO estimates that 97% of the people of Bangladesh have access to water and only 40% percent have proper sanitation. With a staggering 60% of the population that has to endure unsafe drinking water, the nation is in danger. The availability of this water greatly fluctuates throughout the year as the warmer season brings massive amounts of water in frequent monsoons and the cooler season brings drought. The infrastructure cannot adequately deal with the barrage of water in monsoon season so the water is not saved for the drier months. Of the water that is available, over 80 percent is used for agriculture.

The great rivers (Brahmaputra, Meghna, and Ganges) all originate in other countries and the amount of water that eventually gets to Bangladesh is greatly limited by the booming populations of China and India. Only 7% of the total land that creates the watersheds for these rivers is in Bangladesh. Therefore the Bengalis have very little control over how much water they receive from these sources.

Residents Suffer Liver, Stomach Diseases after Oil Spill in Thange River

EnvironServ (K) Ltd workers on site. The company was contracted by Kenya Pipeline Company to clean up the Thange River in Kibwezi East constituency following an oil spill. Photo courtesy Daily NationEnvironServ (K) Ltd workers on site. The company was contracted by Kenya Pipeline Company to clean up the Thange River in Kibwezi East constituency following an oil spill. Photo courtesy Daily NationA report on the impact of oil that spilled into the Thange River basin in Kibwezi East constituency last year has linked cases of liver and stomach diseases among residents to petroleum poisoning. The report states that results of tests done on 161 patients out of 1,071 in February this year showed they contracted diseases caused by benzene and toluene poisoning. The two elements are found in oil. The report, seen by the Nation, was done by Panafcon Consultants, a Nairobi-based economic and social impact assessment firm that was contracted by Kenya Pipeline Company (KPC).

In one case, a 95-year-old male who resides in Thange village complained of difficulties in breathing and general body weakness during the survey.

He underwent liver function tests and results showed “features of benzene /toluene poisoning.”

Mission visits dam rehabilitation project expected to provide water to 17,000 people in Mozambique

29On August 3, 2016, the African Development Bank’s Resident Representative in Mozambique, Joseph Ribeiro, and various members of the diplomatic community visited the Massingir Dam project in Gaza province, in the country’s southern region. The visit sought to illustrate developments work being jointly undertaken by the Bank and the Government of Mozambique.

The mission included Frank E. Viyazhi, High Commissioner of Malawi; and Olebile M. Gaborone, High Commissioner of Botswana; Marcia de Castro, UN Resident Coordinator; and Bettina Maas, UNFPA Country Manager. The members described the trip as an eye-opening experience, which enabled them to link the size of the dam, which is the second largest in Mozambique, with the expected economic impact on the ground.

4,000 Water Tanks Installed in Rainwater Harvest Drive

Photo: The New Times, Rainwater being harvested into a tank. By Emmanuel NtirenganyaPhoto: The New Times, Rainwater being harvested into a tank. By Emmanuel NtirenganyaOver 4,000 water tanks were installed by the end of July in different districts across the country under the Rainwater Harvesting Project which aims to improve livelihoods and to reduce surface runoff-overflow which causes erosion.

The project prioritized high rain density areas, with a target of installing 10,000 water tanks by December. The three-year project is being implemented by Rwanda Natural Resources Authority (RNRA) since January 2014 in six districts namely Nyarugenge, Gasabo, Kicukiro, Musanze, Nyabihu and Rubavu.

According to Innocent Nizeyimana, the project manager, the project is worth over Rwf2.5 billion with the government subsidy amounting to Rwf952 million.

Those who benefit from the subsidy are Rwandans in the third and fourth Ubudehe Social Stratification, and the beneficiary has to own a house.




Current Issue: Africa Water & Sanitation & Hygiene March-April 2017 Vol.12 No.2