Investigating Opportunities for the Formalization of Small Scale Independent Providers of Water Services In Dar-Es-Salaam City, Tanzania
Opere, Samwel Michael
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In the city of Dar es Salaam in Tanzania, 70% of households have no direct access to water supply services from Dar es Salaam Water Supply and Sewerage Authority (DAWASCO). Peri-urban areas are the most affected and are characterised as being both underserviced and un-serviced. Residents in these areas have resorted to alternative water service options including those of informal Small Scale Independent Providers (SSIPs). This study investigated opportunities for formalization of SSIPs of water services in Dar es Salaam city through analysis of SSIPs‟ contribution to water services management, service quality, institutional and policy framework that relate to the functions of SSIPs in the water sector. The study focussed on three types of SSIPs including Pushcart Operators (PSOs), Water-Tanker Operators (WTOs) and Independent-Piped-network Operators (IPOs). The study was conducted in four areas within the city namely: Kibonde-Maji-B, Sinza-C/Tandale, Ndumbwi and Saranga. Service indicators of SSIPs in the four areas were analysed using data obtained through focus group discussions, interviews, observations, and documentation review. Results had established that there were 147 SSIPs serving 21,567 households with 159,368 people in the study areas. They (SSIPs) are an indispensable source of access to water to 57.7% of households in the periurban. It was further established that 70.0% of SSIPs provided water from unregulated and unprotected sources most of which were surrounded by pit latrines. One PSO provided 0.5 to 5 m3 of water in a day; one WTO provided 5 to 30 m3 and one IPO provided 20 to 33 m3. Hours of water supply in a day ranged from 12 to 14 for PSOs, 10 to 14 for WTOs and 16 to 20 for IPOs with service coverage of 3 km, 20 km and 3 km respectively. Households served were 17 to 60 for a PSO, 30 to 70 for a WTO and 12 to 72 for an IPO. Water service charges were US$ 1.20/m3 by PSOs, US$ 1.28/m3 by IPOs, and US$ 6.40/m3 by WTOs. It was furthermore established that 35% of total unaccounted for water by DAWASCO was linked to the informal services of SSIPs. Formalization of SSIPs was seen to be a permanent approach towards better services by DAWASCO. It was suggested for DAWASCO to identify, register, and regulate the functions of SSIPs. This would increase access to clean and safe water in peri-urban, reduce water losses by DAWASCO, protect public health and increase advocacy for public-private-partnership.