“No resources have been allocated by government to WASH as far as Covid-19 interventions into long-lasting solution in addressing WASH is concerned,” Denis Kayiwa, Program Advisor, WaterAid says.
Kampala—6 October 2020: Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) are essential for human health, dignity, empowerment and prosperity, Uganda Parliamentary Forum on WASH (UPF-WASH) says during the 2nd e-Conference on WASH 2020.
They also say it’s fundamental to everyone as per the 1995 Uganda Constitution that recognises Education, Health and Water as basic rights.
“Investing in WASH remains critical in achieving Vision 2040…” a WASH briefing paper for this year’s conference reads.
The conference was convened under the theme: “Advancing the Role of Water, Sanitation and Hygiene During and After Covid-19 Pandemic”.
Earlier in the program, Speaker of Parliament, Rt Hon. Alitwala Kadaga was applauded for being a champion of WASH. This praise was made by many participants, but most notably, Hon. Jackline Amongin, UPF-WASH Chair.
The speaker, in her opening remark, emphasised needs for handwashing and good hygiene, adding that the issue of water is a national security. She is the patron, UPF-WASH.
According to Uganda Water and Sanitation Network (UWASNET) an umbrella of CSOs implementing WASH projects, in the fiscal year that ended, 19/20, 62 Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) reported expenditure of Ugx17.1 billion, this is almost half of those that reported last year but registering 41 percent increment in investment.”
“No resources have been allocated by government to WASH as far as Covi-19 interventions into long-lasting solution in addressing WASH is concerned,” Denis Kayiwa, Program Advisor, WaterAid says.
He urged Uganda’s WASH MPs to demand for a clear WASH government Covid-19 funded response strategy to ensure adequate attention and protection for the poorest and most vulnerable people.
Grace Alupo, Country Director, The Water Trust talked of the need to reintroduce traditional financing, adding: “….financing, I think this is critical but I think traditional ways, where we used to finance in traditional angle. Involving community, where not every day is given to us.
At The Water Trust, we advocate for community saving; traditional approach need to be supported to scale and bridge the gap in financing.
It’s important we integrate mainstream Covid-19 in everything. We have to mainstream whatever new thing we have learnt in order to make it sustainable.
Eng. Joseph Eyatu, Director of Water Development in the Ministry of Water and Environment, says WASH is key for public health and for us to sustain our living.
WASH is an essential service. Before Covid came, we didn’t know. WASH is economic good; we need water for industrial development, help us to reduce the cost of living; health.
“We also realised that for education, WASH helped us to keep enrolment of girl child. All factors that keep girl child out of schools need to be improved.
UPF-WASH says about 650 million people (around 1 in 10) globally lack access to safe drinking water and 2.36 billion (around 1 in 3) of the world’s population have no access to improved sanitation.
In Uganda, there are over 600 boreholes, and only 40% of the money is allocated by the line ministry for maintenance.
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