WASHINGTON, December 17, 2008 — The World Bank’s Board of Directors approved yesterday a US$20 million grant and a US$20 million credit to the Nicaraguan government. The funds will be used to increase access to reliable water and sanitation services for the population living in the Greater Managua region, which is defined as the Metropolitan area of Managua and adjacent municipalities, including the satellite cities of Tipitapa and Ciudad Sandino.
The project will provide access to reliable water supply to an additional 150,000 people and access to improved sanitation services to an additional 120,000 people. The vast majority of beneficiaries live in very poor neighborhoods in the area of Greater Managua.
"This operation will increase the availability of water by investing in wells to be located in the south-east sectors of Managua, and also will be used to rehabilitate water networks and domestic connections that were constructed by the community, at times without adequate technical assistance -a situation that over the years has resulted in considerable water loss through leakages,” said Ruth Selma Herrera, Executive President of the Nicaraguan Company of Aqueducts and Sewage Systems (ENACAL).
The government official added that “At the same time, the project will provide access to water to neighborhoods which have not had access to this important public service given that they were built in areas where there were no wells. Priority will be given to neighborhoods or spontaneous settlements where there are good levels of community organization as well as a commitment to the environment and also to the financial sustainability of ENACAL itself.”
“This project will improve the quality of life of the people, facilitating access to reliable water supply and sewage while contributing to a more efficient management of services by the Government of Nicaragua,” said Laura Frigenti, World Bank Director for Central America.
The Greater Managua Water and Sanitation Project (PRASMA, for its name in Spanish), will finance:
- Water and sanitation coverage extension in low-income neighborhoods.
- Improvements in water supply and efficiency in selected areas.
- Institutional strengthening activities as well as project’s management, monitoring and evaluation.