Zimbabwe: US$50 Million Rural WASH Project Launched.

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Posted by  in: Wash News


Tsholotsho — A US$50 million Water, Sanitation and Hygiene programme expected to improve access to about 2,5 million people in rural areas was launched in July 2012.


Officially launched at Mkubazi Primary School in Tsholotsho, Matabeleland North Province, the programme is expected to see the rehabilitation of existing water and sanitation infrastructure, building of new WASH infrastructure and launch of community-led sanitation programmes.


"Equitable access to water, sanitation and hygiene remain a major concern as they are fundamental to the health and well being of children," the then United Nations Children's Fund country representative Dr Peter Salama said.


Funded by the United Kingdom's Department of Foreign and International Development (DfID), the fund manager UNICEF will ensure that a total of 7 400 broken down boreholes are rehabilitated, 1 500 new boreholes are drilled and 15 000 latrines are constructed in 1 500 rural schools. UNICEF who is going to implement the project through already existing Government structures and in conjunction with Non Governmental Organizations said the project would run in five provinces with low water, sanitation and hygiene access form June 2012 to June 2016. These are Mashonaland West, Midlands, Masvingo, Matabeleland North and South provinces.


"Access to improved sanitation is integral to human dignity as well as to the reduction of sanitation-related diseases. The Rural WASH Project will support demand-driven, community led approaches to mobilise communities to completely eliminate open defecation," Dr Salama said.


Speaking at the same occasion, Water Resources Development and Management Minister Samuel Sipepa Nkomo said 75 percent of the 47 000 previously functional boreholes were not working. Minister Sipepa-Nkomo attributed the limited access to clean water to drying of public and private funding, which mostly affected rural communities, hence initiation of the Rural WASH Project.


Local Government, Rural and Urban Development Minister Ignatious Chombo said the Rura WASH Project is going to go a long way in restoring the capacity of local authorities in service provision, which had been compromised by sanctions, among other factors. He urged local authorities in rural areas to work with WASH implementers for the success of the project. Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, who was guest of honor at the function said without a development strategy for the rural areas the country could not succeed.





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