Increased access to water and sanitation

25 March 2020 | Infrastructure

ELLANIE SMIT



A total of 7 684 boreholes have been drilled and fitted since independence and 51 water supply schemes have been initiated, covering a distance of 12 375 kilometres.

Furthermore, 3 243 water points have been rehabilitated and 23 515 private offtakes constructed.

This is according to agriculture ministry executive director, Percy Misika, who provided an update on the progress made in the development of the agriculture, water and forestry sectors from 1990 to 2020.

According to Misika, 256 earthen dams were excavated and rehabilitated while three desalination plants have been constructed.

These include the large Areva desalination plant at the coast, two smaller desalination plants at Uutsathima and Amarika, and nine water purification plants.

Misika said these developments mean that 90% of rural households and 98.6% of urban households now have access to safe drinking water.

Sanitation

With regard to sanitation, Misika said that 4 015 improved sanitation facilities have been constructed since independence and 13 villages have been declared free from open defecation.

“Before independence, 17% of rural households had access to improved sanitation.” This figure has increased to 35%.

He said before independence, 49% of urban households had access to improved sanitation, and this figure has improved to 82%.

According to him, the national average for sanitation stands at 46%.

Forestry

With regard to forestry, Misika said 43 community forests totalling more than 8.1 million hectares have been established since independence.

Three community wood centres have also been established. These are located at Oshikuku in the Omusati Region, Okahao in the Omusati Region and Keetmanshoop in the //Karas Region.

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