August 3,2004

Only 34 percent of population has access to drinking water, says Minister

The Minister of Energy and Water Affairs, Botelho de Vasconcelos, said that only 34 percent of the Angolan urban population (estimated at 11 million inhabitants) has access to drinking water, whereas 39 percent of the people in the rural areas does not have this precious liquid.
According to the Minister, Angola was far from satisfying the needs of the population, but the government was making efforts in order to change the situation as soon as possible.
According to Vasconcelos, the costs for the covering of the supply of drinking water to the communities were high, but it would be more expensive if such investment would not be carried out. The Minister said that it was expected a covering in the supply of drinking water to the communities of about 67 percent of the urban area and at least 75 percent in the rural area by 2016. At the meeting, officials of the Water sector, representatives of non governmental organisations and of other Ministries were trying to find consensus for the betterment of the draft bill on the regulations of the usage of water resources and water supply for public consumption. (Angola Press Agency, Luanda)

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