Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.


The study aim to show the gradual acceptance of buying water in the open market across Nigeria. The commoditization of water is most manifest in the boom of packaged water, especially the ones in sachets popularly called ‘pure water’. The initial position of the government was to ignore the industry as part of the informal economy. After considerable concerns were raised on public health grounds that water merchants were selling ‘pure gutter’ instead of ‘pure water’, the government, through the National Agency for Food and Drugs Control (NAFDAC) intervened to regulate standards. Proprietors of packaged water are expected to apply for licenses which can only be issued after inspection of their facility by NAFDAC officials. Consumers are advised to patronize only packaged water with NAFDAC number, which is supposed to come with a certification of quality. The paper also examined the socio-economic implications of “pure water” sale, taken cognisance of the policies and reforms on water supply in Nigeria historically. Content analysis through the review of Secondary sources was used. The sale of packaged water will help to ease the hardship in accessing portable water, but the need for tight measures for ensuring its purity by regulatory bodies is paramount.