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Published on: 17/03/2011

The SaniFaso project was introduced in Burkina Faso in December 2010 with the aim of eradicating open defecation in 12 partnering communes (the lowest level of administrative division) throughout the country.

During this four-year programme on rural sanitation at household level in Burkina Faso, 16,000 latrines will be built. Other activities include training local masons and hygiene promotion campaigns. IRC’s involvement in SaniFaso will focus on the reinforcement of existing planning and decision tools by integrating the latest findings on long-term costs of sanitation services from the WASHCost project.

This 3 million Euros programme co-funded by the European Commission is being implemented by the French NGO Eau-Vive, in association with WaterAid Burkina Faso, Helvetas, GIZ/PEA and IRC.

For IRC, this is an excellent opportunity not only to embed the WASHCost results in the country but also to keep reflecting on the appropriate scale of sustainable sanitation services delivery. SaniFaso will allow IRC to further develop its programme in Burkina Faso and to increase its involvement at local level.

Sanitation in Burkina Faso: less than 10%.

Sanitation coverage in Burkina Faso is currently estimated to be at less than 10%. To move towards the MDGs goals for sanitation, a national policy and strategy were recently developed. They were presented, along with the national WASH plan, to the participants by Direction Générale de l’Assainissement, des Eaux Usées et Excrétats (DGAEUE), the General Directorate for Sanitation, Wastewater and Excreta.

Several mayors mentioned that they have received little (if any) information so far about these strategic policies. Such a breakdown in the information chain illustrates one of the challenges for the communes to overcome, as they are the designated implementers. Other issues for the communes include:

  • The urban/rural differences and how they are taken (or not taken) into consideration
  • The limited amounts of money currently transferred from the central government to the municipalities, and
  • The difficulties that the mayors and local technicians have in actually understanding the strategy and the responsibilities that come with it.

Mrs. Sondo, DGAEUE’s director, explained the forthcoming resource transfer, financial and human, to the regions and to communes. This happens through the Direction Regionale de l’Agriculture, de l’Hydraulique et des Ressources Halieutiques (DRAHRH) (Regional Directorate for Agriculture, Water and Fisheries). .

The SaniFaso programme

After the introduction of the SaniFaso programme, partners at the workshop agreed their roles and responsibilities:

  • The partnering communes: Bogandé, Boromo, Dassa, Dydir, Diébougou, Fara, Houndé, Imasgo, Manni, Ramongo, Poura and Thion are responsible for activities coordination/follow-up, social mobilisation, and match-funding.
  • DGAEUE and the DRAHRHs are responsible for the implementation and results dissemination at national level.
  • Wateraid, Helvetas, GIZ/PEA with Eau Vive will assist the communes and match funding.
  • IRC will work on knowledge management aspects and on enhancement of existing planning/decision tools.
  • Eau-Vive oversees the overall coordination and reporting.

Wateraid will work with communes from the Centre-West region; Helvetas with communes from the East and GIZ-PEA/Eau-Vive, with IRC, will cover the South-West region). As every commune works with different capacity levels, coordination and harmonisation between communes and associates are foreseen as an important challenge for the SaniFaso programme. For example, some have WASH technicians, others don’t.

SaniFaso’s associates spent another day discussing the programme modalities. Agreements were reached on the communications and monitoring processes, IRC will contribute to the dissemination of SaniFaso activities and results at international level through channels such as the Source newsletters, WASH news blogs and Websites.

Follow SaniFaso’s latest activities on Eau Vive’s web site and on IRC’s project web page. .

Contact: Christelle Pezon or Amélie Dubé, IRC West Africa programme

Dick de Jong



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