AfricaSan 2015: The Ngor Declaration on Sanitation and Hygiene

Date: 27th May 2015

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Preamble
We, the Ministers and Heads of Delegations responsible for sanitation and hygiene in Africa, together with senior civil servants, academics, civil society, development partners and the private sector at the 4thAfrican Conference on Sanitation and Hygiene (AfricaSan), convened by the Government of Senegal with support from the African Ministers’ Council on Water (AMCOW) in Dakar, Senegal, May 25-27, 2015:

Recognizing that while an estimated 133 million people living in Africa gained improved sanitation since 1990, the level of progress has not kept pace with demographic change; many countries do not have adequate high-level leadership, financial and human resources to implement existing policies, fail to tackle equity, do not build, manage or maintain sanitation systems and services, or create the large-scale hygiene behaviour change;

Mindful that an estimated 61% of people living in Africa do not have access to improved sanitation and that 21% still defecate in the open;

Noting that this lack of access to improved sanitation together with poor hygiene practices result in a huge burden of disease and that the associated economic, human, social, health and environmental costs are a major burden on African countries; 

Reaffirming the human right to safe drinking water and sanitation for all;

Welcoming the aspiration of the draft Sustainable Development Goals which include an explicit target  to “By 2030, achieve access to adequate and equitable sanitation and hygiene for all and an end to open defecation, paying special attention to the needs of women and girls and those in vulnerable situations” committing to integrating these in national policies and plans;

And recognizing that the time has come to incorporate the lessons from the eThekwini commitments and replace them by the “Ngor Declaration on Sanitation and Hygiene”, setting out in particular clear indicators for  monitoring progress;

The Vision articulated by African Ministers responsible for Sanitation and Hygiene at AfricaSan 4, Dakar, Senegal, is summarized below:

Achieve universal access to adequate and sustainable sanitation and hygiene services and eliminate open defecation by 2030.

Commitments
To realise this vision our governments commit to:

  1. Focus on the poorest, most marginalised and unserved aimed at progressively eliminating inequalities in access and use and implement national and local strategies with an emphasis on equity and sustainability;
  2. Mobilise support and resources at the highest political level for sanitation and hygiene to disproportionately prioritise sanitation and hygiene in national development plans. 
  3. Establish and track sanitation and hygiene budget lines that consistently increase annually to reach a minimum of 0.5% GDP by 2020;
  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;
  5. Develop and fund strategies to bridge the sanitation and hygiene human resource capacity gap at all levels;
  6. Ensure inclusive, safely-managed sanitation services and functional hand-washing facilities in public institutions and spaces;
  7. Progressively eliminate untreated waste, encouraging its productive use; 
  8. Enable and engage the private sector in developing innovative sanitation and hygiene products and services especially for the marginalised and unserved; 
  9. Establish government-led monitoring, reporting, evaluation, learning and review systems;
  10. Enable continued active engagement with AMCOW’s AfricaSan process.

We further call on:

  1. All people living in Africa, especially the youth, to utilise and maintain sanitation and hygiene services with propriety and dignity;
  2. AMCOW to prioritise and facilitate adequate resourcing for sanitation and hygiene by mobilising dedicated, substantive new sources of financing; 
  3. AMCOW to facilitate the establishment and management of systems and processes for performance monitoring and accountability against the Ngor Declaration;
  4. Training institutions in Africa to strengthen local capacity to deliver appropriate services in line with demand;
  5. Research institutions in Africa to strengthen the evidence base and develop innovative locally appropriate solutions; 
  6. Civil society in Africa to forge a cohesive, coherent and transparent vision and strategy to work with all stakeholders to achieve the Ngor declaration; 
  7. Traditional institutions, religious leaders and faith based organisations to strongly support equitable sanitation and hygiene activities in their communities; 
  8. The private sector to increase its engagement in the entire sanitation and hygiene value chain to improve innovation and efficiency;
  9. Development banks, donors and partners to increase their support to government led efforts for universal access to sanitation and hygiene and to match this financial support with responsible and accountable engagement.

And in recognition of this we make this declaration in Ngor, Dakar on the 27th May, 2015

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