The World Bank has approved $700 million credit for the Nigeria Sustainable Urban and Rural Water Supply, Sanitation, and Hygiene Programme.
The credit, from the International Development Association, is to ensure that six million people can access basic drinking water services and 1.4 million people can access improved sanitation services.
The SURWASH programme, which would be effected as part of the Nigerian Government’s National Action Plan, was designed to ensure improved water sanitation and hygiene services to 2,000 schools and Health Care Facilities and help 500 communities to achieve open defecation free status.
The World Bank Country Director for Nigeria, Shubham Chaudhuri, stressed that the essence of the programme is to enhance access to safe water, sanitation and hygiene.
The SURWASH Programme, which was opened to all states in Nigeria, would support a suite of investments to increase access to and the usage of WASH services in urban, small towns and rural areas, especially in schools, healthcare facilities, markets, motor parks, among others.
Chaudhuri stated that, “Given that access to WASH is an important determinant of human capital outcomes, including early childhood survival, nutrition, health, learning, and women’s empowerment – all of which in turn affect labour productivity and efficiency; the Programme’s centrality to the human capital agenda and its potential to influence key human capital outcomes cannot be overemphasized”
“Participating states will be able to improve access to safe water, sanitation and hygiene which will help to keep more girls in school, create employment, and reduce open defecation, while developing greater resilience to the impact of climate change, as well as conflicts between different land and water users,” Chaudhuri stated.