Introduction to water and sanitation sub sector
The Government of Rwanda’s ambition is to improve the quality of life of its population by provision of adequate water supply and sanitation services (WSS). It is evident that the lack of basic services such as water supply and sanitation leads to poverty and underdevelopment. The provision of WSS services in line to the Country’s Millennium Development Goals and 2020 Vision targets assures that the country is on track to reach a certain level of eradicating poverty and promote sustainable economic and social development.
Water and sanitation affects broad areas of economic and social life, including health (in the home, hospitals/clinics, health centres), infrastructure (water schemes, waste water and solid waste treatment, navigation, energy production), education (school sanitary facilities, capacity building), agriculture (irrigation, livestock, forestry), industry (plants, tourism), natural resources management (biodiversity preservation, watershed management), and many others as diverse as politics (trans-boundary water management) or economy (impact of pollution costs and access to clean water for industries) and research (appropriate technologies).
Sanitation issues needs to be observed as an integrated development strategy because inadequate sanitation services are detrimental to the health and well bring of the population. Water supply and sanitation are inextricably linked as part of the broader development process.
Against this background, in order to achieve 2020 Vision of accessing safe drinking water to all Rwandans, the country will have to increase the rate of potable water coverage by 2.5 percentage points annually from the estimated rate of 71%. In regards to sanitation, 85% of households have traditional facilities of which only 38% are considered as meeting suitable hygienic standards. To achieve the sanitation targets by 2020, the rural and urban areas are expected to mobilize sufficient investment for sewerage and disposal systems, in addition to which, each town will have adequate facilities for treating and compressing solid wastes for disposal.