Juba Water Supply Project finalizes in 2022

Juba Water Supply Project finalizes in 2022
An underground water pumping system being installed in Juba (photo credit: Pumps Africa)

The project for improvement of water supply in Juba will be finalized by early 2022, the Japanese Ambassador to South Sudan, Tsutsum Naohiro has revealed.

The $47.7 million Japanese-funded scheme will be expected to provide safe and clean drinking water to over 380, 000 residents of Juba City.

According to Amb. Naohiro, the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) will also be expected to complete the work on Freedom Bridge on the River Nile five months after the water project.

“There is good progress now. If the situation in Juba continues to be stable, by July 2022, the Freedom Bridge will be completed and the water improvement by February 2022,” said Naohiro.

Mr. Naohiro was speaking on the sideline of the meeting with the Ministry of Trade on trade bilateral relations between South Sudan and Japan in Juba on Thursday.

Overdue project

Despite the presence of the African longest river that passes through Juba, the residents have no access to safe and clean drinking water with millions relying on untreated water.

The government is yet to provide safe drinking water for its population struggling with water-borne disease infections such as diarrhea, cholera, and typhoid, according to a Ministry of Health report. 

In May 2021, Juba residents complained of buying untreated water expensively from commercial water suppliers. The entire population relies on water truckers as the alternative source of the commodity.

“The salary of other employees is only SSP2,800. Now the water costs SSP1,000 in far places like Jebel Dinka and Gureyi and you need part of that money to buy food and part of it for school,” Egidio Osvaldo, Head of Public Work and Land Affairs at Juba City Legislative Assembly said.

In June 2021, consumers had to brave the increase in prices, where commercial water suppliers scaled prices from SSP300 per drum with residential areas nearby River Nile, including Atlabara, Lologo, and Kator.

Meanwhile, residential areas as far as Gudele, Checkpoint, Rock City, and Munuki pay for SSP700 per barrel. Some residential areas like Lokwilili, Jebel Yeshua, Lemon Gaba pay between SSP900 and SSP1,000 per barrel.

On 6th December 2019, the Government of Japan and the government of South Sudan signed the Exchange of Notes concerning the Project for Improvement of Water Supply System in Juba. It was the second time the two governments signed for additional funding with the total amount of the grant equaling $47.7 million.