USAID Launches $3.5m Activity to Improve Water Safety in Jigawa, Kano

Ugo Aliogo with agency report

The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) through Partners for Development has launched a three-year $3.5 million Water Improvement and Sanitation Enhancement (WISE) activity to improve water safety in Jigawa and Kano states.

A statement by USAID stated that the WISE activity would reduce the occurrence and impact of waterborne diseases through improvements in access to clean drinking water and sanitation, and the adoption of key hygiene behaviors. It explained that one of the first tasks would be to construct or rehabilitate 30 water access points and install 55 sanitation facilities in schools and community health centers, “these improved water access points will provide clean drinking water to more than 66,000 local residents.”

In her remarks, USAID Deputy Mission Director Katie Donohoe said, “Access to basic water, sanitation, and hygiene services within a community are the cornerstone of a healthy, equitable, and prosperous Nigeria.”
She added, “When this is done, each community will have a first line defense against the spread of infectious disease and allow children to spend more time in school.”

On his part, the Deputy Governor of Jigawa State Umar Namadi stated: “Water is life, and it has been one of the priorities of the Jigawa State government. We are ready to cooperate with the USAID WISE activity to ensure that safe drinking water is provided to the people of the state.”

The statement revealed that in 2019 Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene National Outcome Routine Mapping report, two out of five schools in Jigawa State, and three out of four in Kano State did not have access to reliable drinking water. The statement also stated that frontline healthcare workers also lacked access to safe water and struggle to deliver high quality health services.

The statement also noted that the survey found that over half of community water access services in Jigawa broke down within their first year of operation, while over 20 percent in Kano no longer functioned after six months. The statement added that the WISE activity would work toward addressing some of the deficiencies and increase the capacity of local stakeholders to sustain and manage equitable access to water and sanitation.

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