Dhaka citizens have to spend hundreds of crores to ensure their water is safe for consumption
Dhaka residents have to spend an exorbitant sum of money per year in order to make the water in the capital safe for consumption, even though it is the responsibility of the Dhaka Water Supply and Sewerage Authority (Wasa).
According to a study by Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB), city residents have to burn gas worth Tk332.37 crore per annum in order to make the Wasa-supplied water drinkable.
A stunning 51.5% of all Wasa consumers in Dhaka reported their water supply was visibly filthy, while 41.4% complained their water smelled terrible. Poor water quality all year round was reported by 34.5% of Wasa users. Water quality was reported to be poor the most in summer with 62.1%, followed by 59.6% in monsoon, with only 7.5% complaining of poor quality water in winter.
As such, the water has to be purified by the users – with 91% preferring boiling – by burning 365,737,008 cubic metres of gas annually, which is valued at Tk332.27 crore.
According to survey, 24.6% consumers from residential and slum connections were affected by water borne diseases such as diarrhoea (63%), jaundice (34.3%), skin diseases (37.4%), dysentery (17.1%), typhoid (19.2%), cholera (13.1%) and other water borne diseases (3.7%).
The findings were revealed at a press conference at the Midas Centre on Wednesday. The research titled “Dhaka Wasa: Challenges for Good Governance and Way Forward” was based on Wasa’s consumer service in 10 of its 11 MODs zones.
The research was carried out from April 2018 to March 2019 and tracked Wasa’s performance and feedback between 2010 and 2018.