Water Supply for peri-urban areas guidelines
It is estimated that well over 60% of the urban population in Zambia live in low-cost or peri-urban areas. At the same time these are the areas with the highest population growth and with the lowest service coverage with respect to water and sanitation. Thus the need to extend water supply services is also highest in these areas. But the Commercial Utilities lack the financial means to extend their services to the areas where mostly underprivileged and poor people live.
Even where funds are available, inappropriate design and operation is often the reason that the intended benefits cannot be fully enjoyed by the urban poor.
In order to respond effectively to this unacceptable and ever increasing problem, the Government of the Republic of Zambia (GRZ) established a Devolution Trust Fund (DTF) to promote among others the extension of public water distribution systems and onsite sanitation in peri-urban areas. In comparison to the rehabilitation and construction of entire water systems with networks and household connections for water and sewerage the measures to be funded by the DTF need relatively small amounts of funds but have a tremendous impact on the living conditions of the urban poor. It can also speed up efforts for improvements, because rehabilitation of existing systems, and construction of entirely new systems need a timeframe of 3-5 years.
Consequently, the DTF’s concentration on public water distribution systems and sanitation (onsite) is not in competition with the efforts of other Institutions financing the rehabilitation and construction of entire water and sanitation systems. It should rather be seen as a complimentary effort focused only on the urban poor.