In May 2023, we visited Unguwar Liman in Batagarawa LGA, Katsina state, and they were a community of over 5,000 people plagued with ancient-day problems. They had no clean water source or an access road into the town for economic activities.
The community of over 1,000 farmers are forced to share a single pond of dirty water with their animals and for farming. This led to the spread of several water-borne diseases. The pressure on the single pond makes it dry out quickly then they have to travel over 5km away to Dandagoro to get water.
They previously had a hand pump borehole which got damaged five years ago and could not be repaired because of the land terrain in the community.
The water situation deteriorated severely, and the daily travel made the children miss school many days, affecting their performance. When we visited, we held a community sensitization meeting where they narrated their plight. We trained them on how to use their voices to advocate for their needs and who to reach out to.
We also spotlighted their plight on our social media pages. Two months after, we are glad to announce that there is now potable water in the Unguwar Limar community for the first time in five years. The local government constructed the borehole after the community’s advocacy pressured them.
Muntari, the community youth leader, expressed his joy at the new development and how it will get the children back in school and improve their performance.
“The situation was terrible to the extent that our children miss school because they have to send them to fetch water in the morning, and it takes them almost the whole day. Now, the children’s school attendance and retention will improve because they can easily get water.
Danjuma Alti, a community elder, expressed how the community is grateful for this development and hopes for better amenities in the nearest future.
We appreciate the Batagarwa LGA’s swift intervention and call on them to do more to provide access roads for the community to improve trade activities.
Story by Mustapha Saddiq & Ayomide Ladipo