• Richard

WEDC and the Handpumps


Nostalgic return to look at the handpump demonstration area outside the WEDC offices, that we established in the 1980's; some pumps kindly donated by manufacturers, some made by research students, and most of the initial batch I remember collecting in a hired van from the 'Consumers' Association Testing Laboratory' following their laboratory testing for World Bank: Community Water Supply- The Handpump Option, Arlossoroff et al, 1987: 'a joint contribution by the United Nations Development Programme and the World Bank to the International Drinking Water Supply and Sanitation Decade.'


Am I right in thinking the sector has now had its third 'Drinking Water Decade' plus the MDGs and SDGs etc. And it still all comes down to 'effective demand' - lack of that is.


We also built some demonstration latrines, cut through on the stream bank side so that the 'workings' were clearly visible. Congratulations to the WEDC team on not allowing the greenery to completely submerge the twin-pit pour flush latrine.


And a 'Mozambique domed latrine slab', clearly made by some of the MSF course participants - with its own decoration now! Remembering that we first tried to copy these from Brandberg et al in an Oxfam programme in Juba, South Sudan during the '80s. And then, when reporting on that progress in a subsequent Nairobi Water Conference, being admonished by the session chair that no such slab would be strong enough if there was no steel reinforcement. I was lost for words at the time.

Very encouraging to go searching in Maputo more recently (thanks again Arjen!) to find SMEs still manufacturing and selling these cost effective slabs, on the side of the street in one case, with no subsidies. Much appreciation and congratulations to Brandberg et al.


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