Affiliated organizations : African Minister’s Council on Water (AMCOW), AfricaSan International Task Force
Type of publication : Report
Date of publication: February 2019
The Ngor Vision and Commitments
On the 27th May 2015, African Ministers responsible for sanitation and hygiene adopted the Ngor Declaration on Sanitation and Hygiene at the AfricaSan4 conference held in Senegal. The Ngor Declaration vision focuses on universal access to adequate and equitable sanitation and hygiene services and an end to open defecation by 2030, and as such reflects the paradigm shift of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Throughout much of Africa, access to at least basic sanitation is below 50%. Data to monitor hygiene is available for only 37 countries, of these all except two have less than 50% of the population with basic handwashing with soap facilities at home.
The results of the Ngor Commitment Monitoring show that the enabling environment for sanitation and hygiene is currently uneven. Progress in the enabling environment for leadership and coordination, and government-led monitoring systems, is not matched for commitments such as waste management, eliminating inequality, and establishing budgets.
The commitment to eliminate inequalities in access and use, and to establish budgets for sanitation and hygiene remain critical bottlenecks which threaten to undermine progress in Africa.
Commitment 1 : Focus on the poorest, most marginalized and unserved aimed at progressively eliminating inequalities in access and use and implement national and local strategies with an emphasis on equity and sustainability
Across Africa there has been limited progress on this commitment. Regionally, Central Africa has seen less progress than other regions.
28 countries have sanitation and hygiene strategic plans which address the needs of the poorest and most vulnerable, 14 of these include specific access targets and milestones. Progress on this commitment is held back by a lack of attention to user satisfaction which is not tracked in two thirds of countries (26 rural/26 urban).
Commitment 2 : Mobilise support and resources at the highest political level for sanitation and hygiene to disproportionately prioritise sanitation and hygiene in national development plans
Good progress has been seen in terms of policies and SDG-alignment as well as some progress in legislation. 18 countries have legislation which is in harmony with and supports their sanitation and hygiene policy, a further 16 have legislation in process.
Funding and implementation of sub-national development plans for sanitation and hygiene is weak and acting as a drag on overall progress for this commitment.
Commitment 3 : Establish and track sanitation and hygiene budget lines that consistently increase annually to reach a minimum of 0.5% GDP by 2020
The West Africa region has seen some progress and could potentially provide a source of learning for others. As a region Southern Africa is behind with little progress registered.
Across Africa, only 6 countries have investment plans for sanitation and hygiene which define the budget required to meet country goals defined for both SDG 1.4 (basic sanitation) and SDG 6.2 (safely managed sanitation). There is also limited progress on effective and comprehensive budget tracking.
Commitment 4 : Ensure strong leadership and coordination at all levels to build and sustain governance for sanitation and hygiene across sectors especially water, health, nutrition, education, gender and the environment
Ensuring that leadership for sanitation and hygiene is clear and that coordination is effective at all levels has performed the most strongly of the all Ngor Commitments. All but one country have a designated government body with a clear mandate to lead on sanitation and hygiene.
Coordination is also making progress; all except three countries have at least 3 different sectors represented in sanitation and hygiene coordination mechanisms.
Commitment 5 : Develop and fund strategies to bridge the sanitation and hygiene human resource capacity gap at all levels
For this commitment, disaggregating the regions shows large differences – human resources remain a key challenge in Eastern Africa with limited progress, there is also limited progress in Southern Africa. However, there has been some progress in West and Central Africa – indeed, for Central Africa Commitment 5 is the best performing commitment.
Only 13 countries have human resource targets included in their national sanitation and hygiene strategy (or as a standalone HR strategy).
Commitment 6 : Ensure inclusive, safely-managed sanitation services and functional hand- washing facilities in public institutions and spaces
Overall there has been some progress in establishing the enabling environment for institutional sanitation and hygiene and ensuring inclusive, safely managed services in all settings.
Most countries have standards, targets and milestones for sanitation and hygiene services in some, if not all, institutional settings. 12 countries have specific, clear standards for inclusive and safely managed sanitation services, and handwashing facilities in schools, health facilities, and other public institutions. A further 19 have standards for at least one institutional setting.
Commitment 7 : Progressively eliminating untreated waste, encouraging its productive use
Across Africa this commitment has shown least progress in both urban and rural areas. No country is able to track the amount of faecal waste being disposed of in the environment by having monitoring mechanism in place, although 11 countries have carried out an assessment. There is also poor progress in regulating productive re-use of excreta and establishing waste re-use certification processes.
Commitment 8 : Enable and engage the private sector in developing innovative sanitation and hygiene products and services especially for the marginalised and unserved
The commitment to working with the private sector to address the needs of the poorest is a key bottleneck in Central, Southern, and Western regions. Whilst over three quarters of countries have private sector engagement included in their sanitation and hygiene strategies, few specifically target the marginalised and unserved.
31 countries have private sector engagement for sanitation and hygiene included in national strategies, of these 10 include have specific targets for the marginalised and unserved.
Commitment 9 : Establish government- led monitoring, reporting, evaluation, learning and review systems
Sanitation and hygiene monitoring systems have been established in most countries. However, more work is required to ensure that data is fully available for use by government and partners.
All but three countries have a government-led sector review processes in place, and for more than half of countries (20) the reviews track all sanitation and hygiene SDG targets, are led by government and involve development partners and civil society.
Commitment 10 : Enable continued active engagement with AMCOW’s AfricaSan process
17 countries have participated in the four most recent AfricaSan activities (prior to the 2018 Sub- regional meetings) and a further 17 have participated in 2-3 of the four most recent AfricaSan activities.
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