Poor Sanitation Stifling Malawi’s GDP
The Ministry of Water and Sanitation says the country is losing 1.1 percent of its GDP to expenses incurred in the provision of health care to people affected by ailments which come as a result of poor sanitation.
Speaking at the official launch of the Lilongwe, Water and Sanitation Project (LWSP), which promotes use of clean water and hygienic toilets, Deputy Minister John Bande said there is a need to improve sanitation as a way of dealing with waterborne diseases in the country.
Bande said this would help improve the health of people, and thereby help the country achieve the Malawi 2063 agenda as the money being lost could be channeled toward other development activities.
“The population in Lilongwe is growing so fast and, as government, we have to ensure that the services we provide are properly assigned,” he said, “Waterborne diseases are easy to prevent but kill a lot of people.”
Lilongwe Water Board Chairperson Engineer George Kajanga said the project will increase access to safely managed household and public sanitation in the city by improving the sewage network, among others.
“The Lilongwe Water and Sanitation program has other components and one of them is replacing and repairing pipes that were broken. So, we are going to improve our network in order to supply water to more people in the city,” he explained.
The K113 billion project is being funded by the World Bank and is expected to be concluded in 2025,
World Bank Country Representative Hugh Ridell said he is hopeful that the funds will be used for their intended purpose.
“We encourage citizens to come forward and to put pressure on the implementing agencies to correct the issues. We also have our own platform of fraud and corruption in all our projects,” he said.
The World Bank says the project is expected to be extended to other parts of the country to help improve sanitation services in the country.
Last modified on Tuesday, 24/01/2023