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Increase investment in water and sanitation sub-sector – NGO urges govt

BY: graphic.com.gh

World Vision Ghana, a Christian humanitarian organisation, is calling on the government to increase investment in the water and sanitation sub-sector to ensure easy access to potable water across the country.

According to the organisation, although the governement has made strides in providing 80 per cent of Ghana’s population with safe drinking water, about six million children and their families still lacked access to safe water.

“As we celebrate World Water Day 2021, World Vision Ghana wishes to congratulate the government, development partners, NGOs/CSOs, private sector and other non-state actors for working hard to ensure that 80 per cent of Ghana’s population has access to safe drinking water (MICS 2017/18). We, however, need to remind ourselves, that while we have made some strides, some six million children and their families still lack access to safe water,” the organisation noted in a statement issued on March 22 to commemorate the World Water Day.

The statement also urged the government to take immediate steps to address water quality challenges and also pay attention to the delivery of safe water in schools and healthcare facilities.

 “We also need to pay attention to water quality and the inequalities associated with access. The 2017/18 Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey report reveals that close to 8 in every 10 households had E-coli (faecal contamination) in their drinking water while close to 5 out of 10 water sources were also affected,” it said.

“As believers in a better world for children, World Vision lives and works in communities to co-create water, sanitation and hygiene solutions that last. We believe that nothing can be more important to child wellbeing than access to safe drinking water. Globally, the organisation is the largest non-governmental provider of clean water in the developing world, reaching a new person with safe water every 10 seconds,” it added.

Read statement below:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
PRESS STATEMENT BY WORLD VISION GHANA TO COMMEMORATE WORLD WATER DAY 2021
“EVERY CHILD DESERVES CLEAN WATER”

Accra, Monday, March 22, 2021

“The poor and needy search for water, but there is none; their tongues are parched with thirst. But I the LORD will answer them; I, the God of Israel, will not forsake them” Isaiah 41: 17 (NIV).

The importance of water to human beings cannot be over-emphasized.

Water promotes improved health, livelihoods and general wellbeing. Indeed, it is often said that WATER IS LIFE and no strategy for poverty reduction can ignore people’s vital requirement for safe water.

Sadly, millions around the world, including Ghana, do not have access to this vital need.

It is not uncommon to find women and children travelling long distances in search of safe water but only ending up fetching water from rivers, streams, unprotected ponds and other contaminated water sources.

In several rural and small towns, community members still share drinking water sources with cattle and other animals. Forty-nine (49%) percent of public basic schools lack access to safe water on their premises (EMIS 2018).

As we celebrate World Water Day 2021, World Vision Ghana wishes to congratulate the government, development partners, NGOs/CSOs, private sector and other non-state actors for working hard to ensure that 80% of Ghana’s population has access to safe drinking water (MICS 2017/18).

We, however, need to remind ourselves, that while we have made some strides, some six million children and their families still lack access to safe water.

We also need to pay attention to water quality and the inequalities associated with access.

The 2017/18 Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey report reveals that close to 8 in every 10 households had E-coli (faecal contamination) in their drinking water while close to 5 out of 10 water sources were also affected.

The same report also reveals clear wealth disparity in basic water access, with the wealthy nearly twice more likely to have access than the poor do. Additionally, urban dwellers are more likely to have basic access than those from rural areas.

As believers in a better world for children, World Vision lives and works in communities to co-create water, sanitation and hygiene solutions that last.

We believe that nothing can be more important to child wellbeing than access to safe drinking water.

Globally, the organization is the largest non-governmental provider of clean water in the developing world, reaching a new person with safe water every 10 seconds.

World Vision reiterates its commitment to partnering government, private sector, NGOs/CSOs and other stakeholders towards increased access to safe water. We join practitioners in the water and sanitation sub sector, and all Ghanaians, in calling on the Government of Ghana to do the following, as a matter of urgency:

1.    Prioritize and increase investments to ensure that every child everywhere has access to safe water;

2.    Explore and invest in alternative water supply systems where underground water is not feasible;

3.    Take immediate steps to address water quality challenges, both at the source and in households including those identified in the 2017/18 Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey report;

4.    Pay attention to the delivery of safe water in schools and healthcare facilities in order to create a conducive environment for quality education and healthcare.

5.    Create the enabling environment required to implement policies that will ensure the sustainable management of water supply systems.

ENDS.
Notes to editor
For further information or to organise an interview, please contact: Washington M Nuworkpor (233 20 817 0286)/Attah Arhin (233 671 6034).  
World Vision is a Christian relief, development and advocacy organisation dedicated to working with children, families and communities to overcome poverty and injustice. World Vision has been working in all regions of Ghana for the past 42 years.
For more information, please visit www.wvi.org/ghana, Facebook: World Vision Ghana or follow us on Twitter @WorldVisionGH