Financing Sustainable Water Service Delivery of Small Town Water Systems in Ghana: The Gaps and Needs
Rural water coverage in Ghana is on the increase, yet there are real concerns about the level of service received and sustainability of water supply systems. One of the reasons is the lack of systematic maintenance because of inadequate funding and unreliable cash flow for Capital Maintenance Expenditure. This paper highlights the current gaps and needs of water management models in three districts using focus group discussion and key informant interviews to collect qualitative and quantitative data. The study revealed that the mechanism inherent in the National Community Water and Sanitation Strategy for addressing Capital Maintenance Expenditure works for systems that have been implementing it. Limited capacity and weak management characterize water systems with inadequate mechanism to address Capital Maintenance. Results showed limited awareness and application of water sector guidelines for the management of the piped systems by the management models and the districts. This paper contributes to the literature on funding mechanisms for small town systems sustainable water delivery in Ghana. The study concludes that to effectively address sustainable water delivery in small town systems, governance, operations and financial management regimes in line with the water sector guidelines are critical to bring about the necessary change in the management models. This calls for stronger supervisory and oversight responsibilities from Community Water and Sanitation Agency and the District Assemblies.