|Uganda's Water Sector Development: Towards Sustainable Systems (SKAT, 1996)|
This is a story of success in the development of rural water supply, a difficult sector in which to deliver cost-effective, sustainable results. It is a story of success in the public sector in Africa, a continent with few reasons to celebrate the achievements of its civil administrations. Moreover, it is a story of success in Uganda, a country long shunned as one of Africa's "basket cases" devoid of social, political and economic optimism. Therefore, it is both an unusual and a highly pertinent story. It contains many messages. It delivers many lessons. Above all it provides hope.
The case study documents the strategies adopted in Uganda for water resources management and development, with specific reference to provision of rural water supplies. It traces the first tentative steps to re-establish a semblance of order to the sector ten years ago through to the bold actions of the present day. However, it is not a story of success only. It is also a story of continuing needs, of unfinished business. The case study looks forward to the year 2000. It reviews the ambitious targets set by the Government for the provision of rural water supplies and considers the likelihood of the sector maintaining its track record of success.
Much of the success in this story can be attributed to people people with vision, people with a desire to improve the status quo, people with a will to "make things happen". It is to these people, many of whom remain nameless, that this case study is dedicated.
The author wishes to thank the contributors to the case study, especially the staff of the Ministry of Natural Resources, Directorate of Water Development for their openness, willingness to share and clarification on points of substance. Special thanks must go to Mr Patrick Kahangire and Dr Sven Jacobi, Director and Senior Technical Advisor respectively for their enthusiastic inputs to the case study, guidance through the wealth of documentation on the subject and thoroughness in reviewing the early drafts of this manuscript.