From corruption scandals involving one of South Africa’s most influential families, to simple measures improving farming conditions and the day-to-day lives of hundreds of rural Indian women, water has once again been a prominent theme across global platforms. Here we are sharing some of the most thought-provoking water-related stories and resources that the internet had to offer in September. Share other suggestions in the comments field.
The links go to the websites of origin. WIN is not responsible for the accuracy of external content.
Global – Leaders pledged to greatly reduce poverty by 2030. In some places, deprivation may only get worse
Coinciding with the UN General Assembly, Global Goals Week took place 22 – 29 September. It’s the annual week of action where UN agencies, international organisations, NGOs, and communities push for action, and call for accountability, to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Adopted in 2015, we are only three years down the road, but is the global community on track to achieve the 17 commitments? A new report from the International Rescue Committee (IRC) seems to suggest no, with low and middle income countries, and those considered ‘fragile’, lagging behind the most. Citing conflict, forced migration, and the reduction of international donor funds, the report predicts that 2030 will see deprivation get worse in certain parts of the world.
Read the full article via The Washington Post.
South Africa – South Africa to Investigate Water Department Deals With SAP
South African President Cyril Ramaphosa has called for a probe into the behaviour of the Department of Water & Sanitation over corruption allegations in their awarding of an IT contract to German company SAP SE.
SAP SE claims it has paid approximately USD8.4 million to firms connected to the powerful business family, the Guptas, who allegedly used their influence with the former President Jacob Zuma to secure state contracts.
Read the full article via Bloomberg.
Iraq – Protests Continue In Port City In Iraq Over Lack Of Drinking Water And Corruption
Basra, a port city of sprawling slums off Iraq’s southern oilfields, has seen weeks of protests over a lack of clean drinking water. Many protestors in the nation’s second largest city cite political corruption and neglect as the crux of the problem. Jane Arraf, NPR reporter, speaks with those taking to the streets demanding their essential services.
Listen to the soundbite via NPR.
Global – Water and Sanitation Information Brief: Anti-Corruption in Water and Sanitation
A new brief produced by Sida – the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency – outlines what corruption in the water sector means, the fundamental elements needed to address these issues, and the important actors, including WIN, working to improve integrity. Highlighting the need for a multi-pronged approach – from implementing accountability measures to hold decision-makers to account, to open and equitable participation of communities and civil society through the various stages of the programme process – Sida once more draws attention to the roles transparency, accountability, and participation play in improving the sustainability of the sector. Sida’s approach to corruption is:
- Always prevent
- Never accept
- Always inform
- Always act
Download the brief via ReliefWeb.
India – Farm ponds improve lives of Singhbhum women
Since 2013, Tata Steel Rural Development has constructed approximately 800 farm ponds in East Singhbhum, West Singhbhum, and Seraikela Kharsawan districts of eastern India. Generally, the ponds increase water security for farmers, while reducing the time and energy it takes to collect water. The new ponds, however, are specifically improving the lives of rural women who are now able to access water for bathing and sanitation purposes much more easily, and allowing them extra time to socialise and undertake other activities.
‘Apart from reduction in drudgery, time saved in collecting water has positive effect on the health of women. It is clear that one should look beyond economic parameters and consider the social impacts while constructing water-harvesting structures’.
Read the full article via Village Square.
Image: Ayman Gamaledeen Gomaa Elmeligi