Journal of
Agricultural Extension and Rural Development

  • Abbreviation: J. Agric. Ext. Rural Dev
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-2170
  • DOI: 10.5897/JAERD
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 489

Full Length Research Paper

Patterns and problems of domestic water supply to rural communities in Enugu State, Nigeria

Obeta Michael Chukwuma
  • Obeta Michael Chukwuma
  • Hydrology and Water Resources Unit, Department of Geography, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria.
  • Google Scholar

  •  Received: 11 July 2016
  •  Accepted: 21 September 2016
  •  Published: 31 August 2017


This study investigated the patterns, problems and options for improved domestic water supplies to the rural communities of Enugu State, Nigeria. The purpose of the study was to determine the gap between supply and demand, physical and socio-economic variables that influence the supply situation and suggest options for improved water supply in the area. Data on water use habits were collected from 340 households, in 17 autonomous communities through the use of questionnaire and oral interview. Additional data were collected though field observations, from three FGDs and from relevant records at the offices of the Enugu State Water Corporation. The data were analyzed through the use of inferential and descriptive statistical tools. The results of the study revealed that wide gaps exist between water supply and demand in all the sampled communities. The water schemes developed by governments and NGOs are largely non-functional. The quantities of water demanded and supplied vary widely. The mean household water demand was found to be 13685.5 lpd against the supply 9028.8 lpd, leaving a daily household deficit of 4656.9 lpd. Over 50% of the population access less than halve of the 115 L per person per day recommended by the federal government of Nigeria. .32% of the respondents rely on private boreholes for their water needs; 26.5% depend on water vendors, while the rest depend on contamination-prone streams, rivers, unlined and unprotected wells, harvested and stored rain water etc. Principal Components Analysis reduced the 20 physical and socio-economic variables accounting for water supply problems in the area to five underling dimensions which accounted for 85.9% of the problems, leaving 14.1% to other variables not used in the study. Suggestions for improved household water supply in the area were advanced.


Key words: Rural communities, water supply, supply deficits, constraints, policy options, Enugu state.