The most important map for us is always the price of water. As the water market is still highly privatized, especially in the areas with bad or no ‘normal’ access to water from EPAL (Impresna Publica da Aguas) at home. This means that water becomes a commodity that is traded, and the more distance there is between the source of water and the house, the higher the prices. In many of the high density areas there is no functional household water system. And roads are too small for tank-trucks with water. Water is transported by the women and girls in buckets and bidons, or delivered by boys with carry-alls.
The maps below show the variation of water prices across the city of Luanda based on a 20 liter bidon or bucket which is the common measure of sale at community stand posts or at the water tanks of private sellers.
It can be seen that there is still a wide variation in water prices and that water is still a major financial burden on families in some parts of the city. However in areas where the DW/Angolan Government-led community management system (MoGeCA) has been introduced, water can be found at affordable prices. The coverage of community management via MoGeCA has increased significantly in the fourth year of DW’s Voices of Citizens for Urban Change Program, funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
Looking at the 3 years we have mapped, we can see shifts in the prices and the most expensive locations. This clearly indicates the improvements reached in some areas, and the deterioration in other areas. One main pipe burst, or a road blocked, or a heavy rainy season (like this last year) can influence the access to water for tens of thousands of people.