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Ms Alupo made the remarks on Thursday evening in Olilim parish, Palam Sub County in Katakwi District while turning on the Shs1b Olilim solar piped water project constructed by Welthungerhilfe, a German-funded NGO operating in Teso and Karamoja with a niche in water and sanitation
Vice President Jessica Alupo has challenged development partners to use the prevalent goodwill and working environment to supplement the government in rendering services to Ugandans in the areas of education, water, and the health sector.
Ms Alupo made the remarks on Thursday evening in Olilim parish, Palam Sub County in Katakwi District while turning on the Shs1b Olilim solar piped water project constructed by Welthungerhilfe, a German-funded NGO operating in Teso and Karamoja with a niche in water and sanitation.
She said that the government does not work in isolation and it is the reason that it recognizes the role of the private sector, civil society, and non-government organisations as development partners.
Ms Alupo said this piped water project is not only going to serve over 10,000 residents who stay around Olilim but also lessen the time that the locals have been spending at water sources, adding that the work that Welthungerhilfe is doing is so visible and as the government, they appreciate their supplementary role in development.
She also requested the entity to improvise clean water sources at the border points with Karamoja, especially around the security roads for army officers deployed along those belts.
Ms Alupo added that the government is also exploring developing a water system on Lake Bisina under the National Water and Sewerage Corporation for the urban areas of Katakwi and Kapelebyong Districts.
Ms Eseza Lydia Apio, the water officer for Katakwi District said that they are grateful to Welthungerhilfe for the support they have rendered in establishing safe water points for the people of Katakwi, adding that they would still be lagging without such support.
She noted that in 2018 when the NGO started work in Katakwi they drilled 24 boreholes, 15 in 2019/2020 and 13 in 2021-2022.
Ms Apio said the district currently has 568 boreholes which puts their water coverage at 75.8%.
Ms Harriet Agemo, the project manager for Welthungerhilfe said they have been able to construct 54 boreholes, rehabilitate 132 boreholes, and also extend water to six schools in Teso and Karamoja in regards to hygiene and sanitation.
“The prevalent problem that we have noticed across schools is the absence of pit latrines which we hope the government will have to address,” she explained.
Ms Agemo challenged the beneficiary communities to ensure that the water projects extended to them are well managed but also ensure their sustainability.
The country director for Welthungerhilfe, Ms Jeannette Wijnants said safe water is a key human right and one of the most basic human needs for health and wellbeing, adding that access to safe water is goal six of the sustainable development goals.
Ms Jeannette said amidst this, it is projected that billions of people will lack access to these basic services in 2030 unless progress quadruples.
“Globally, water demand is rising owing to rapid population growth, urbanisation, and increasing water needs from the agriculture, industry, and energy sectors,” she explained.
Ms Jeanette said water demand has outpaced population growth and half the world’s population is already experiencing severe water scarcity at least one month a year, which is projected to increase with the rise of global temperatures as a result of climate change.