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National sanitation policy for Benin (Inglês)

Access to drinking water and adequate sanitation is a necessary condition for good health, for an acceptable quality of life, for economic development and for environmental conservation. However, a large segment of the population in Benin notably low-income groups in suburban and rural areas does not have access to the most basic services. What is even more serious is that the coverage rate in urban sanitation has even decreased over the last few years. The economic, social and environmental consequences are, to say the least, alarming. The previous conception of development of the sanitation sector, based on improving the coverage rate, has arrived at a dead end. It appears that, using this approach, the objective of access to clean drinking water and sanitation for all by the year 2000 is a goal which is out of reach. New approaches must be tried out in order to meet this challenge. The concept of need must be replaced by that of demand for services by the population. Environmental constraints such as water resources and quality management as well as general improvements in living conditions of the population can no longer be ignored. Establishing a realistic frame of reference, based on an in-depth and objective analysis of the general situation and including institutional, financial and technical recommendations, represents the necessary starting point for a comprehensive reform of the sanitation sector. The national development policy for the sector in Benin constitutes an effective tool for managing services that are sustainable, demand-driven, financially accessible and environmentally sound.




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