FAOLEX Database

Framework Law

The main law applicable to water resources management, which covers all of the following areas: administration; management, conservation and use of freshwater resources; water rights; waterworks; water supply
Date of text: 13 September 2016

Constitutional provisions

Date of text: 27 August 2010

Right to water: Article 43 defines the right of each person to clean and safe water in adequate quantities. Article 58 requires the State to put in place affirmative action programmes designed to ensure that minorities and marginalised groups have reasonable access to water, health services and infrastructure.

Natural resources: “Natural resources” includes surface and groundwater (art. 260). The State shall ensure sustainable exploitation, utilisation, management and conservation of the environment and natural resources, and ensure the equitable sharing of the accruing benefits. Every person has a duty to cooperate with State organs and other persons to protect and conserve the environment and ensure ecologically sustainable development and use of natural resources. (Art. 69). All rivers, lakes and other water bodies as defined by an Act of Parliament and all catchment areas are defined as "public land". The Fourth Schedule concerns the distribution of functions between the National Government and the County Governments and also regards water resources management and conservation.


Water used for irrigation, forestry and aquaculture
Date of text: 29 July 2019
Date of original text: 23 September 2021 (1983)
Date of original text: 18 March 1977 (2012)

Water Supply and Sanitation

Provision of water services by public utilities or commercial organizations; water supply for domestic, industrial or other purposes; right to safe and clean drinking water and basic sanitation; quality of piped water; sewerage
Date of original text: 18 March 2008 (2012)


The political, social, economic and administrative systems that govern water management and conservation; good practices; good governance; decentralization; water user’s associations
Date of text: 29 July 2019
Date of text: 21 June 2017


Waterworks; water supply systems; dams; hydropower systems; irrigation systems
Date of text: 29 July 2019
Date of original text: 23 September 2021 (1983)

Water Resources Management and Water Rights

Ownership and control of water resources; abstraction and diversion of water; allocation and quotas; riparian rights; priority of rights; free water use
Date of text: 29 July 2019

Water and Environment

Date of original text: 22 August 1979 (1991)

Water Quality and Pollution Control

Control of pollution and quality of freshwater bodies and groundwater; agricultural point and non-point sources of pollution; water quality standards
Date of original text: 23 September 2021 (1983)


Freshwater resources located below the surface of the earth; aquifers; groundwater abstraction; well-sinking; boreholes; hydrogeology

Disaster Resilience

Water-related hazards; flood; drought; water shortage; adaptation to climate change; early warning system/emergency intervention system

Transboundary Waters

Transboundary effects; international basin institutions; international agreements; transboundary coordination; transboundary aquifers


Date of text: 01 June 2018
Date of text: 01 October 2017
Date of text: 01 December 2016
Date of text: 23 September 2021
Date of text: 23 September 2021
Date of text: 23 September 2021