Water Access Today and Tomorrow: Domestic Water Sustainability under Informal Water Supply Markets in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

  •  Francis Dakyaga    
  •  Alphonce G. Kyessi    
  •  Joel M. Msami    


The article examined domestic water access sustainability under informally driven water supply market, drawing on suppliers-consumers’ perspectives. Analysis was done on the capacities of the informal water suppliers for sustainable water provision, how the informal water markets operate, and clients’ perspectives of water access today and tomorrow. Four different data set were comparatively analyzed from interviews with the Municipal Water Engineer (MWE), Ward Health Officer (WHO), 3 Mtaa leaders from 3 informal settlements, interviews with 43 informal water sellers from three informal settlements, including a survey of (n = 292) clients in three informal settlements. It was realized that though informal water suppliers are sociocultural capable of providing flexible and gender-sensitive water supply services, households have unsustainable access to improved water due to the financial, hydro-technical, institutional and organizational in capacities of the informal water sellers coupled with the low financial abilities of low-income earning households to continuously purchase water for domestic activities. It was observed that informal settlements’ dwellers are less likely to meet their water supply needs in the near future if their income status together with the financial, hydro-technical, organizational and institutional capacities of the informal water sellers are not improved.

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