Acceptability of urban water, sanitation, electricity and transport services

The quality and acceptability of services in a range of urban communities were investigated by the RurbanAfrica project. Research was undertaken through focus group discussions and interviews with individual residents in 30 settlements in six cities- Douala and Bafoussam in Cameroon, Accra and Sekondi- Takoradi in Ghana and Dar es Salaam and Arusha in Tanzania. Residents reported a multitude of challenges in meeting their needs for water, sanitation, electricity and transport. Overall, their highest priorities for improvement were urban transport and water supply, followed by sanitation. Electricity was the lowest priority overall, though it was still first or second priority in six of the 30 settlements. The lower priority for improving sanitation than water supply contrasts with reported coverage levels which are twice as high for water supply as for sanitation, suggesting that “coverage” by improved water supply does not imply an acceptable level of service.