Accessing Basic Public Services Essay

Length: 5 pages Sources: 12 Subject: Government Type: Essay Paper: #2086509 Related Topics: Government Corruption, Electricity, Public Finance, Urbanization

Excerpt from Essay :

¶ … Accessing Government Services in Africa: House hold services (piped water, electricity telephone), public education public health.

Hospitals with nurses; classes with teachers; functioning toilets and running taps: these things are all distant delusions for a huge population of individuals living in the developing nations across the world. These essential public services (water, good hygiene, health, and education) are the solutions to changing the lives of those individuals dwelling in poverty. The development of robust public services accessible for everyone is not a new thought: it is actually the basis upon which the current societies of the rich nations are constructed on. Recently, remarkable outcomes have been noted on the developing nations that follow suit. The development of robust public services is not a foreign thought; it has actually been proven to work. The goal of every nation should be to make poverty a thing of the past. Today, living without these most basic human rights is viewed as a disgrace; however, millions of families still do (Emmett, Duncan Green, Aikman, Kamal-Yanni, & Smyth, 2006).

The invigorated stress on infrastructure in Africa is really appreciated, since Africa is currently trailing behind in the coverage of network infrastructure services compared to other parts of the globe. Majority of the nations in Central Asia and Eastern Europe have almost worldwide access so that the discussion in infrastructure policy occurs around there and hence enhancing service quality. Trailing closely behind is the Middle East, North Africa, and Latin America. With regards to gross national income (GNI), Africa is the nearest to South Asia amidst other parts of the globe. Rates of population growth and urbanization are, however, the greatest in Africa, which leads to rapid increments in infrastructure requirements at the household level when compared to South Asia. Generally, Africa trails behind other parts of the world in the provision of enhanced sanitation and water services. When it comes to fixed and mobile phone coverage, Africa is ahead of South Asia, an indication of the floods of cell phone networks, services and users (Banerjee, Diallo, Foster, & Wodon, 2009).


Household studies, have for a while now, been utilized in the approximation of inequality and poverty trends, in addition to academic trends and health markers. They have, however, not been utilized to the same degree to gauge trends in the coverage or access to novel infrastructure services, and coverage charges for electricity in households. Nonetheless, there has been a slight development in flush toilets in the last decade. There has been a drop in the coverage of piped water, whereas a rapid increase in the coverage of landline (including cellular) telephone has been realized. The drop took place in the urban areas, even as the coverage in infrastructure either remained steady or improved in rural Africa. Coverage of all the four services for the needy households remains almost impossible. If business goes on as usual, it would actually take considerably extended time duration to attain widely shared or global coverage even in nations where there coverage is enhanced. These particular outcomes point to the necessity of increment in efforts by international communities and governments to raise access to novel infrastructure services gradually in Africa (Banerjee, Diallo, Foster, & Wodon, 2009).

A visit to the government departments is totally dreadful; it is described by loads of paper work, unending queues, limited spaces, bureaucracy and lots of frustrations. The rising needs of citizens and varying rules and regulations, place the governments under stress to deliver at the appropriate times and quality (Nkwe, 2012). For examining the performance of developing nation governments, an Essential Services Index has been developed by Oxfam. It grades nations in four social regions (education, children survival degrees, access to safe water, and access to good health) and makes a comparison of their performance with per capita national earnings. The assessment displays that certain governments have constantly punched above their weight.

Service in Africa

According to Afrobarometer, that can offer policy-makers with essential proof, the first region of service...


A team of four field workers and a field supervisor together examine these characteristics, and after determination the characteristics are entered in all questionnaires handed out in that EA. The outcomes imply that the African governments in cooperation with international donors and agencies, and at certain instances with private co-operations, have managed to construct local community schools in a simple walking distance of 9 out of 10 affected persons across the 20 nations incorporated in Round 4 of the Afrobarometer. About two thirds of Africans stay near markets and regions with access to cell phone services. About half stay in EAs having piped water and electricity systems. Approximately a quarter stay in regions with a sewerage system or a post office (Afrobarometer, 2010).

Utilizing Botswana as a case study, 99% of the EAs in the urban regions have access to piped water while in the rural regions the figure is 90%. There is 100% access to electricity grids in the urban areas EAs, while in the rural areas the figure drops to 65% (Afrobarometer, 2010). In the Afrobarometer field works, the major public services in the communities assessed are public schools, electricity grids, cell phone networks, and piped water systems. The On the other hand, post offices, tarred roads, sewage systems, police stations, and health clinics are least found services (Afrobarometer, 2014).

Why Government has to act

There exist strong social and economic reasons why governments ought to arrange important services, instead of paying for them via the markets or leaving it up to citizens. First, if citizens are well-enlightened and healthy, it profits the social and economic welfare of the entire population, on top of the economic and health condition of every person. Secondly, the complete information required in coming up with informed decisions about services and who are obligated to provide them, is not available to citizens. This is specifically very essential in healthcare. Thirdly, citizens in poor nations, specifically in rural areas, rarely possess a provider option: whether of clinics, water supply, or schools. Actually, they are frequently lucky to have access to any of these services (Emmett, Duncan Green, Aikman, Kamal-Yanni, & Smyth, 2006).

In the nineteenth century, there was an intervention by the governments of well-off nations to improve public services. In the UK, the incompetence, prices, and corruption in the private segment of water supply resulted to the development of sanitation and public water systems. In Germany, several insurance methods were merged into a single equitable system by the national health system. In Europe, Japan, and North America, obligatory public education efforts spread to accommodate all segments of respective nations in the dawn of the century, and these states developed even more after the Second World War.

What Government needs to do?

In order to tackle these issues, political dedication and the will to change is important in assuring the functioning of services, and to accomplish this, governments require to feel the pressure. The government should be demanded to spend more on vital services and exhaust it appropriately across the nation. The national alliance of academic groups, Elimu Yetu (our education), in Kenya, played an essential part in making free primary education a key election matter, making sure it was implemented in 2002; the outcome was that 1.2 million kids attended school for the very first time. The greatest anti-poverty alliance was created in 2005, the Global Call to Action against Poverty (GCAP). It saw more than 36 million individuals take action in over 80 nations. Major requirements thereto are excellent worldwide public services for everyone and a finish to privatization, which leads to poverty and deficiency (Emmett, Duncan Green, Aikman, Kamal-Yanni, & Smyth, 2006).

Public sector employees ought to be viewed as heroes they actually are, and kept at the center of developing services for everyone. Every thriving nation has developed a culture of public service, whereby public sector employees are urged celebrate their contribution to the country, and the community in return should accord them with the status and respect they deserve. Though wages alone do not enhance motivation, it is however, the first priority in cases where pay is meager. One of the main concerns for many teachers is housing, particularly female teachers in the rural areas. Governments ought to combine efforts with the trade unions to realize better conditions and wages, to encourage employees to do their jobs without worries of basic resources. Governments also need to invest in skilled organizers and directors to generate and execute their plans. Wage increment for the public health employees in Malawi is being financed by donors. This is enhancing the quality of care in the hospital wards in addition to greatly causing a reduction in the number of nurses and doctors…

Sources Used in Documents:


Afrobarometer. (2010). What Can the Afrobarometer Tell Us About Service Delivery in Africa? Afrobarometer.

Afrobarometer. (2014). Ghanaians' evaluations of public service delivery. Afrobarometer.

Banerjee, S., Diallo, A., Foster, V., & Wodon, Q. (2009). Trends in Household Coverage of Modern Infrastructure Services in Africa. Development Dialogue on Values and Ethics in the Human Development Network and of the Sustainable Development Department in the Africa Region Vice Presidency.

Emmett, B., Duncan Green, M.L., Aikman, e., Kamal-Yanni, m., & Smyth, I. (2006). In the Public Interest: Health, Education, and Water and Sanitation for All. Oxford: Oxfam International.

Cite this Document:

"Accessing Basic Public Services" (2015, July 31) Retrieved March 26, 2023, from

"Accessing Basic Public Services" 31 July 2015. Web.26 March. 2023. <>

"Accessing Basic Public Services", 31 July 2015, Accessed.26 March. 2023,

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