Vila Times

Largest water system in Vanuatu launched on Malo Island

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The largest water system on Malo Island in Vanuatu spanning 44km benefitting over 2,000 people has been launched.

Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, Hon. Ralph Regenvanu stated, “This project has pulled together many key partners of the government to address the crucial need for safe water, sanitation and hygiene in the communities on Malo Island in line with the National Water Strategy’s vision of sustainable and equitable access to safe water and sanitation for the people of Vanuatu.”

East Malo communities no longer have to rely on rainwater but now have access to piped water that is more reliable during the dry season. Situated just outside of Santo, Malo Island’s 19 villages on the east side will benefit from the construction of the largest water system in Vanuatu.

Andrew Parker, UNICEF Vanuatu’s Chief of Field Office stated, “UNICEF is proud to support the Government and partners in the water and sanitation sector to implement a project that has far reaching benefits for women and children.” He added, “Due to Vanuatu’s vulnerability to natural hazards a focus on increasing the community’s resilience is key.”

As part of the Government’s Water and Sanitation Sector Strengthening Project, the NZD2.5 million Malo project in East Malo, West Ambae, and Malekula is a collaboration between the Department of Water Resources – Ministry of Land & Natural Resources, the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT), and the United Nations Children’s Fund together with World Vision International Vanuatu.

“Improving access to safe water and sanitation for people and communities is part of New Zealand’s commitment to improving health outcomes in Vanuatu,” said New Zealand’s High Commissioner to Vanuatu, Georgina Roberts. “New Zealand is pleased to have supported the Government of Vanuatu and partners to deliver reliable safe water and sanitation to the people of Malo, contributing to improved health and wellbeing, which underpins Vanuatu’s social and economic development.”