Access to Clean Water and Sanitation Eased in Baidoa – SouthWest State

Over 500,000 residents of Baidoa can now access water consistently throughout the year. 

Baidoa, Somalia – The Kismayo-Baidoa Urban Water Project has successfully provided thousands of residents in Baidoa, including internally displaced individuals and host communities with access to safe water and improved sanitation through construction of critical infrastructure. This project, which has been successfully completed has been instrumental in enhancing community resilience against climatic shocks including drought and other environmental challenges.  

Residents can now access water consistently throughout the year. The recurrent droughts in Somalia have adversely impacted both the quantity and quality of water, leading to a decline in the condition of water points. Consequently, water supply needs were being met through emergency operations such as emergency trucking.  

The project, implemented over a period of four-year period at a cost of USD 23 million funded by the African Development Bank, addresses these challenges and ensures sustainable water access.  

"This initiative has addressed the recurring water crisis, a top priority among the growing humanitarian needs affecting the residents of Baidoa town. This sustainable project will effectively mitigate the risks associated with water scarcity in Baidoa.” Said Hon. Jama Taqal, Minster, Ministry of Energy and Water Resources.  

To secure a reliable water supply, the project drilled 20 boreholes, equipped with solar systems for sustainable operation. These boreholes are fenced with chain links for security and have caretaker facilities to ensure round-the-clock maintenance. Groundwater monitoring systems have been installed to prevent over-pumping, ensuring the long-term viability of these water sources. Additionally, an elevated water tank and a warehouse to keep supplies have been constructed.  

Hon. Iman Ali, Minister, Ministry of Energy and Water Resources, SouthWest State emphasized the significant contribution of the project in strengthening and improving access to social infrastructure in both peri-urban and urban settlements. 

In addition to boreholes, the project includes the construction of two concrete elevated water tanks each with a capacity of 48 cubic meters, two water reservoirs with a total capacity of 3,000,000 liters each and a 29-kilometer piping system connecting the boreholes to the main reservoirs. 

“Access to clean water and sanitation is critical to mitigating water-borne diseases like cholera and acute watery diarrhea, which tend to surge during periods of water scarcity, particularly impacting children under 5 years old.” Cited Frantz Celestin, Chief of Mission, IOM Somalia.  

This intervention aims to significantly reduce the incidence of these diseases. Added Celestin.  

A vital component of the project is the establishment of a water laboratory in Baidoa. This facility serves as a testing point for water from various sources, including rivers and wells, to ensure its safety for human consumption. Trained water laboratory technicians monitor water quality, a service that has been embraced by individuals and companies alike. 

Furthermore, the project promotes hygiene practices by constructing gender-segregated sanitation facilities in schools, health facilities, and public places. Dr. Omar Khayre, Senior Programme Manager at IOM Somalia, emphasizes the importance of gender-sensitive sanitation facilities in fostering inclusivity and ensuring equitable access to basic amenities, particularly for vulnerable individuals such as women and children. 


For more information contact: Muthoni Njenga, Senior Media and Visibility Assistant,  

SDG 6 - Clean Water and Sanitation