An evaluation of performance of water distribution networks in Lusaka city: a case for the Hillview South water project

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Musambo, Manengu
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The University of Zambia
In the Vision 2030 Strategic Focus document, the Government of Zambia aims to provide wholesome water supply to all Zambians by the year 2030. Against this background, the Lusaka Water and Sewerage Company (LWSC) implemented a water distribution network (WDN) project in Hillview South in 2012 in order to improve service delivery in the area. In line with the principles of project management, this study sought to evaluate the performance of the WDN in Hillview South. This was done by assessing the effectiveness and efficiency of the WDN in delivering water with respect to project management processes vis-à-vis planning. It is envisaged that this study will form the basis for evaluating the performance of all future WDNs implemented by LWSC. A case study approach was used, employing both qualitative and quantitative methods. Primary and secondary data were collected through questionnaires, in-depth interviews, observations and review of documentation. A questionnaire based survey was used to collect primary data from a total of 90 households that were purposively selected. Key informants from LWSC and the National Water and Sanitation Council (NWASCO) were also interviewed on aspects of the project implementation process and cost recovery. The data collected were analyzed using Statistical Package for the Social Sciences and Microsoft Excel spread sheets to bring out statistical representation of data in frequency tables and figures. Water samples were also collected from the boreholes supplying Hillview South as well as various points in the network and tested in order to determine its quality for use. The study revealed that the WDN is performing according to its design, though some aspects of its design were inadequate resulting in frequent service disruptions due to insufficient water quantities being delivered at inappropriate pressure. The study also revealed that LWSC’s cost recovery may not be very effective for the sustainability of the WDN in the long run. However, the implementation of the WDN was relevant because the Hillview South community can now access water they did not have before. It is important that LWSC enhances their due diligence before designing WDNs in order for the WDNs to perform effectively.
Water distribution network--Zambia , Clean and safe--Drinking water--Zambia