DR Congo: $70m for new schools, health centres and more


African Development Bank provides loans to build 41 schools, 40 health centres, 22 drinking water networks and 88 latrines in the Democratic Republic of Congo.  

The African Development Bank (AfDB) has announced lending of $70.04m for the Democratic Republic of Congo to implement the second phase of its Central Region Socio-Economic Infrastructure Strengthening Project (PRISE II).

The project will be implemented over five years and will build 41 schools, 40 health centres, 88 latrines and 22 mini-drinking water networks. This is seen as a vital improvement to resilience in the large African nation as the impact of climate change takes effect. It will also create 333 permanent jobs and more than 1,500 construction-related roles through the five-year programme.

Dr Beth Dunford, vice president of the African Development Bank Group for agriculture and human and social development said: “PRISE II aims to ensure sustainable and inclusive access to safe drinking water, sanitation, health, education and employment for beneficiary residents, especially women and children who bear the burden of providing households with safe drinking water. It builds on the achievements of the previous programme and supports the government of Congo’s efforts to address institutional weaknesses and provide sustainable water services.”

The project will improve access to drinking water and sanitation in rural areas of the targeted provinces and improve enrolment rates to help reduce the gap between boys and girls in primary and secondary education. It also aims to improve people’s access to health care, reduce the maternal mortality rate; and to strengthen the capacity of province and decentralised authorities in the country that manage public water services.

It is estimated that almost 900,000 people in 41 rural districts across ten provinces will benefit from the project, as it builds upon the success of phase one of the project. Phase one delivered 60 schools, 60 health centres, 60 drinking water systems and more than 500 latrines.

The AfDB’s deputy managing director for the region, Solomane Koné, said: “The PRISE II project has a strategic character to accelerate the implementation and achievement of tangible results under the National Water, Hygiene and Sanitation Program (PNEHA 2030) set up by the Government of the Democratic Republic of Congo in 2020. It reinforces and complements the bank’s other interventions as well as the attractiveness and living environment of the project’s target areas.”