Conclusions from an intensive two day national symposium held from 20-21 September 2018.
At the end the Symposium the 170 participants reached the following main conclusions. There are many aspects of Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 6.2 that we do not yet cover in the National Hygiene and Sanitation Programme: gender issues, access for people with disabilities, proper use of sanitation facilities, treatment and reuse of sludge.
These aspects require a clear vision and phasing by 2030 because it is not realistic to do everything at the same time. Dealing with these aspects requires very strong interdepartmental cooperation within the governmental entities. For now this cooperation is very weak between water and sanitation, health, education, urban planning and housing, agriculture, environment, justice and human rights, territorial administration, trade. Cooperation can only happen with a strong impetus and rigorous oversight by the Prime Minister and Ministry of Finance.
It is also necessary to change the financing model for sanitation and hygiene promotion with a much stronger emphasis on CLTS or community empowerment and solidarity financing mechanisms (Sanithon, Fasotoilettes, but also the contribution of the national lottery LONAB, the pension agency CNSS as well as corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives of private companies). Increased support from the Ministry of Finance will be essential for realising this model of alternative financing.
There is also a need for a more robust strategy to promote the private sector in the provision of sanitation and hygiene services. We will then need the expertise of the Ministry of Trade as well to improve involvement of donors active in the promotion of the private sector.
Finally, it is essential to operationalise the public hygiene law, which includes several essential provisions for the success of SDG 6.2 and this is primarily the responsibility of the Ministry of Health. It is not possible to improve hygiene and sanitation in a sustainable manner without applying the sanctions already provided for by the law against acts of pollution such as open defecation. CSOs and the media will also have a great role to play to promote the public hygiene law and the buy-in of all citizens who must all engage in mutual accountability with public authorities.
Juste Hermann NANSI
IRC WASH Burkina