The Impact of Water Sector Reforms on Women’s Access to Water Services in Lake Victoria Basin

Citation:
Dr. Okeyo, J. O. (2014).  The Impact of Water Sector Reforms on Women’s Access to Water Services in Lake Victoria Basin. Public Policy and Administration Review. 2( 3), 65-82.

Abstract:

This paper assesses whether by commercializing the provision of water services as part of water
sector reforms, the government has reneged on its promise to provide water to its citizens as a
basic human right. The study used secondary data and primary data from a household survey of
288 respondents, seven Focus Group Discussions (FGDs), and 28 Key Informant interviews
from seven (7) WSPs, namely, Mogombet, Chemosit, Boya, KIWASCO, SNWSCO, MIKUTRA
and Nyasare of the Lake Victoria South Water Services Board (LVSWSB) umbrella. The study was
conducted through human rights approach under governance theory, positing that the
government in as much as it receives either resistance or competition from other interacting
actors, still has an obligation to provide basic services, water provision included, to its citizens.
The study used both qualitative and quantitative techniques to analyze the collected data. The
techniques included use of content analysis of secondary data, frequency tables and cross
tabulations to measure the central tendencies and dispersions. The main findings were that water
sector reforms has not benefited the consumers of water services in general, and women in
particular. Instead it has impoverished the population further as expressed in the form of
increased proportion of household income on water expenses. Secondly the government has
concentrated more on regulatory and distributive aspects of water service provision than
producing more water for increased access to a greater number of population, implying that more
women still do not access quality water in the right quantity at the right time. The study
recommended that , the “Service Provider” role of the state should be changed to that of a
regulator and facilitator of services at the Counties’ level for increased popular participation in the
governance of water provision services through community and private operators as well. This
will therefore enhance the participation of women in the local level governance of water services,
hence, increased access to water by virtue of being active participants in the determination of
ownership, distributive, and management processes of water.

The Impact of Water Sector Reforms on Women’s Access to Water Services in Lake Victoria Basin

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