The mayor of the province consisting of one town, 15 communities and 59 villages declared that 3 out of 27 public schools will be fully renovated by the end of August.
“Next year we’re rehabilitating toilets in two other schools and the toilets will be brought inside the building in six other schools. So, for the most part, there won’t be an alarming situation in the province,” said the mayor. On the other hand, he also emphasized the fact that society’s awareness of water usage is critically low: “In some schools new toilets were recently installed without water because the project writers who asked for co-founding never mentioned that vital addition in the project budget. So, basically, we have new toilets without water,” he commented.
Simon Gabrichidze stated that there are many components of the same problem that neither the government nor schools are aware of. “On the one hand, it’s a systemic flaw that a random school might say that the local municipality and the Ministry of Education are responsible for the water issues and on the other hand, the local government might think that it’s the school’s and the ministry’s joint duty. We even asked the directors to whom they should address and they didn’t know the answer,” he said.
During his survey, Simon Gabrichidze found cases of defective rehabilitations as well. For instance, in the city of Akhmeta in the Kakheti region, the pipes had been repaired but local residents still weren’t getting any water. Georgia’s rural communities are in desperate need of clean and safe drinking water, but what’s unfortunate is that most of them are unaware of their own needs and rights concerning water.