Government aims to attract more investments for water sector

The minister of Energy and Waters, João Baptista Borges, assured this Friday that the government will keep attracting investments for the water sector as it is an important contributing factor to sustainable, economic and social development.

Speaking at the opening of the “National Water and Sanitation Forum” (FONAS), he underlined that the water sector is at the center of the attention of the Angolan Executive due to its across the board character and for being part of the objectives of the UN Agenda 2030, which defends universal access and equitable access to safe water and sanitation by 2030.

He stressed that the rate of access to water is still relatively low. “We are at around 60% access to water, which means that a large part of the population still does not have access to basic drinking water services”.

“Efforts are being made to build new water supply systems, the quality and regularity of supply, which directly influences the quality of life of the countryside populations, both in the main urban centers and in different locations of the country, despite the scarcity of resources.

João Baptista Borges highlighted that the government has implemented different programs and projects to improve the water supply, management of water resources, in order to allow the population adequate and universal access to water and sanitation services.

He added that the programs already implemented are based on the priorities defined in the National Development Plan (PDN 2018-2022), referring to sectoral studies from 2015 to 2022, with partner institutions such as the World Bank, African Development Bank, UNICEF and the European Union.

The minister highlighted that actions have been taken to build provincial labs to ensure water quality, which have largely contributed to the reduction of endemic diseases such as cholera and other types of infectious diseases, as has happened in the interventions on Covid-19.

On the other hand, he revealed that in the area of the sanitation system, important studies had been carried out, aimed at raising funds, considering the need to improve the health conditions of the population, related to waterborne diseases.

Borges also went on to inform that there are studies and several actions carried out for the management of sanitation in 11 coastal cities, namely Lândana, Cabinda, Soyo, N´zeto, Ambriz, Porto Amboim, Lobito, Benguela, Baia Farta, Moçâmedes and Tômbwa.

According to the official, actions are underway that foresee the revision of the master plans for water and sanitation in all municipalities in the provinces of Cabinda, Bengo, Cuanza Sul, Cunene, Lunda Norte, Lunda Sul, as well as in the capitals of the provinces of Huambo, Uíge, Cuanza Norte, Malanje, Bié and Huíla.

He highlighted that some of these locations never had potable water and today have modern collection, treatment and distribution networks.

João Baptista Borges also disclosed that he felt that there was a need to develop FONAS within the framework of a program launched in 2019 by the Ministry of Energy and Waters, together with the Ministry of the Environment.

The National Water and Sanitation Forum took place in Luanda, within the framework of the World Water Day, which is celebrated on March 22nd.

The meeting discussed topics such as “The Financial Challenges of the Water and Sanitation Sector”, “Security and Climate Resilience in the Water Sector”, “Sanitation Problems in Angola” and “Sanitation in Coastal Cities”.

Source: Angola Press News Agency (APNA)