The use of composite water poverty index in assessing water scarcity in the rural areas of Oyo State, Nigeria
Physical availability of water resources is beneficial to man when it is readily accessible. Oyo State is noted for abundant surface water and appreciable groundwater resources in its pockets of regolith aquifers; as it has about eight months of rainy season and a relatively deep weathered regolith. In spite of this, cases of water associated diseases and deaths have been reported in the rural areas of the state. This study attempts to conduct an investigation into accessibility to potable water in the rural areas of Oyo State, Nigeria via the component approach of water poverty index (WPI). Multistage method of sampling was applied to select 5 rural communities from 25 rural LGAs out of the 33 LGAs in the State. Data were collected through the administration of 1,250 copies of questionnaire across 125 rural communities. Component Index method as developed by Sullivan, et al (2003) was modified and used in this study. The results show that values of WPI were generally low, ranging from 11.29% in Itesiwaju LGA to 47.89% in Atisbo LGA out of 100% maximum obtainable; indicating that these rural areas are water stressed. The paper recommends aggressive human development efforts and the need for massive improvement in water infrastructure in the state.
Key words: Water Poverty Index (WPI), Water accessibility, Rural Areas.
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