Assessing the impact of public-private partnerships in the water supply schemes in Lusaka: The case of George complex

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Mwanza, Vincent
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Due to the fact that the concept of Public, Private Partnership (PPP) and Community Based Partnership in particular is relatively new in Zambia, the study aimed at assessing the impact of the water supply Public Private Partnership on George Complex residents. Central to the study was to find out whether as Walker (1993) put it that the community based PPP can increase cost recovery, promote sustainability and respond more to the needs of the users in peri-urban areas (like George Complex). Both primary and secondary sources were used. Primary data was got from the residents in the study area, Resident Development Officers, Officials from Lusaka City Council (LCC), Lusaka Water and Sewerage Company (LWSC), CARE International and Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA). Method of data collection for the residents and LWSC a scheduled structured interviews (Questionnaires), was used while the rest of the organisations, a non-scheduled interviews was used. Secondary sources included the University of Zambia Main Library,.Geography Department Library, The University of Zambia Institute for Social and Economic Research and the Research Unit at LCC. These sources helped in literature search as well as coming up with a literature review. Data analysis was done both by quantitative and qualitative methods. Quantitatively, percentages and tables were used, while qualitative involved presenting data into categories of importance with regard to the impact of the partnership on the residents. Results of the study revealed that with the introduction of the partnership in George Complex, cost recovery has been enhanced as consumers pay for the service before they use it. To ensure sustainability of the scheme, the concept of community participation was introduced, from which positive results have been recorded, it is also evident that the partnership has responded well to most of the needs of the residents. Before the partnership, shortage of water, vandalism of water facilities and water borne diseases, especially during the rain season, was the order of the day. Since the partnership was established in 1995, residents have continued to enjoy a constant flow of clean, safe and adequate water supply. Hence reduction in the distance traveled to sources of water, especially women and children. And more significantly, is the reduction in water borne diseases as well as vandalism of water facilities. The way forward for PPP in water sector in the study area is to pay particular attention to the needs of the most vulnerable in George Complex. These include the elderly or aged as well as households headed by children so as to improve their livelihood.
Water supply-Community , Water-Utility-Water supply-Economic aspect