Water service provision for the peri-urban poor in post-conflict Angola
One of the important challenges of post-war reconstruction is to provide more and better quality basic services, such as water. Previous attempts at upgrading main supply systems to accommodate peri-urban areas have been overwhelmed by the explosive demographic growth of Angola’s major cities brought about by many years of civil war. This paper documents strategies developed by the informal private sector and local communities themselves to meet the demand for water services that the Angolan Government has been unable to provide. The paper demonstrates that local communities’ own engagement in the management of water distribution and their assumption of the responsibility for maintenance and the payment of service fees is a sustainable and affordable model. The paper also points out that building on the successes of existing locally driven initiatives, can bring national and international water targets closer to realisation and that local innovations not only improve water provision, but do so in a manner that involves and responds to the urban poor more than conventional water projects do.