Africa's Water Crisis
AMREF has warned it may take two centuries for sub- Saharan Africa to achieve clean water supply. AMREF says even with achievement of the 7th Millennium Development Goal on clean water supply, millions in Africa are still lacking water.
The international community marks the World Water Day by celebrating improved water supply, but the AMREF warning sends a message of emergency to African governments. According to AMREF four out of ten Africans living in the sub-Saharan region lack clean water.
With African countries already grappling with food security, the AMREF warning affirms the World Water Council’s concern on the relationship between food security and water suplly. The council during this month’s 6th World Water Forum held in Marseille, France stressed the need for governments to invest in infrastructure that improves water supply to the citizens.
Already drought in the sub Saharan Africa is straining water supply. And with the deteriorating water towers it may actually take two centuries to reverse the water shortage in the region.
The right to clean water access is internationally recognized as a basic human right. But only seven African countries have included the right to water access in their constitutions. Kenya Congo and Uganda are among the few African countries that list clean water supply as a constitutional right. However, according to the United Nations, these countries are still off track in provision of clean water to their populations.
Whereas the Africa is lagging in clean water supply, the United Nations report cites a number of African countries that have surpassed the clean water supply goal. According to that report,Ghana the leading, providing clean water to over 24 million people in its population.
AMREF is therefore calling for further commitment and accelerated action to ensure that the 300 million people in Africa also have a chance to reduced extreme poverty.