Water experts, policy makers, government representatives, United Nations’ agencies, donors and non-governmental organisations (NGO) kicked off the celebration of the seventh edition of the Africa Water Week in Libreville, Gabon on Monday, October 29, 2018, calling on African governments to reflect on achievements made towards providing clean water and sanitation services.
The week-long event is convened by the African Ministers Council on Water (AMCOW) in collaboration with UKaid supported project for unlocking the potential of Ground Water for the Poor (UpGro), USAID, Africa Development Bank (AfDB), the Global Water Partnership (GWP) and the International Water Management Institute.
According to Prof Makame Mbarawa, the AMCOW President and the Minister for Water and Irrigation for Tanzania, the event is a call to action and positions Africa to creatively think, act and win.
“This is an opportunity to share lessons and good practices in water security management, to share lessons and good practices on enhancing water and sanitation resilience to climate change,” he said in a statement.
One of the objectives is also to create an opportunity to contribute to developing strategies on raising adequate and sustainable financing of water and sanitation agendas.
The 7th Africa Water Week brings together over 1,000 participants from governments, regional institutions, international partners, the private sector, the scientific community, civil society, and the media, particularly from Africa
Gabonese Minister for Water and Energy, Patrick Eyogo Edzang, lauded Prof Mbarawa’s statement, saying that accomplishing water security is imperative to safeguarding sustainable access to adequate quantities of acceptable quality water to maintaining livelihoods, human wellbeing, and socio-economic development.
The Africa Union Commissioner for Rural Economy and Agriculture, Sacko Eyogo Leonel Correa, urged all African governments to include more water sanitation and hygiene projects in their National Determined Contributions (NDC) to unlock more climate-related financing mechanisms such as the Green Climate Fund, Adaptation Fund, AfDB Climate related Funds, and a host of other sources of funding.
Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs) is a term used under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) for reductions in greenhouse gas emissions that all countries that signed the UNFCCC were asked to publish in the lead-up to the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris. Once the agreement is ratified, the INDCs automatically changes to NDCs.
“I also want to congratulate AMCOW on the launch of the 2018-2010 strategy and, therefore, I call upon our ministers to take action, and they should not keep this important document on their shelves,” said Correa, calling on development partners to help in implementation of the tool.