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Water & Sanitation: Global Agencies hail Africa’s Monitoring & Reporting System PDF Print E-mail

Stakeholders from across the globe have commended Africa’s trail-blazing web-based monitoring and reporting system for the water and sanitation sector. The laudatory remarks were made in Accra, Ghana at today’s opening of a week-long review workshop on the harmonised, region-wide monitoring and reporting framework for Water and Sanitation sector in Africa.

The workshop draws participants from over 42 African countries as well as stakeholders from the global water family including the UN Water, WSSCC, UNICEF, UNESCO, UNECE and WHO GLAAS. Also in attendance are representatives of the African Union Commission (AUC) and the African Water Facility (AWF).

Developed in 2016 by the African Ministers’ Council on Water (AMCOW), the Pan African Monitoring and Reporting System serves as a platform to report progress on the implementation of the AU Heads of States and Governments’ Sharm el Sheikh Commitments which seek to accelerate the achievement of the Africa Water Vision 2025, as well as the global high level political commitments on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) on water and sanitation.

Considered as one of the most ambitious attempts at tracking sectoral progress, the system, according to Dr. Canisius Kanangire, AMCOW’s Executive Secretary, represents Africa’s readiness to learn from past mistakes in monitoring the implementation of the MDGs as well as efforts being made to attain Africa’s Agenda 2063.

The Ghanaian Sanitation and Water Minister, Hon Joseph Koffi Adda while declaring open the workshop, expressed his delight at AMCOW’s decision to convene the first review process for the Pan African Water and Sanitation Sector Monitoring and Reporting System in Ghana which is the home of Pan-Africanism. Represented by the Ministry’s Chief Director, Joseph Obeng-Poku, the minister recalled the words of the late Pan Africanist leader, Kwame Nkrumah who on the 24th of December 1957 described access to water as a barometer for measuring the progress and welfare of the people.

“I therefore see the decision by African Political leaders to set up a Pan-Africa Harmonised Monitoring and Reporting System for the water and sanitation sector in order to report regularly to the Assembly of Heads of State and Government under the Africa Union as a desire to fulfill the vision and dreams of founding fathers of the continent” Hon Adda said.

Sylvester Matemu, AMCOW’s Technical Advisory Committee Chair, in his remarks lauded the workshop idea as a credible way of “reviewing the AMCOW monitoring system and deepening partnership with relevant global agencies for effective and harmonized monitoring and reporting processes.” According to Matemu, the workshop which also serves as the first inaugural meeting of the Integrated Monitoring Initiative under the UN Water Family “provides an opportunity to launch the 2017 data collection and submission campaign.”

Representative of UN Water, William Reidhead in his remarks stated that “UN-Water is very pleased to have a chance to join efforts with AMCOW in this work. During the week to come we look forward to learning about the established mechanisms for national and regional monitoring in Africa, and steps that can be taken to harmonise the regional and global efforts.” “We are excited to explore opportunities for collaborating with AMCOW and with participating countries in the 2017 baseline process; and we are additionally interested in learning about communities of practice in Africa which can serve as an example for other regions in the world” Reidhead added.

Olushola Olayide of the AU Department of Rural Economy and Agriculture while delivering the statement of the African Union at the workshop expressed delight over the fact that “the Monitoring and Reporting System for the Water and Sanitation Sector in Africa allows AMCOW, through the Specialised Technical Committee on Agriculture, Rural Development, Water and Environment of the AUC to report periodically on the progress of Water and Sanitation in Africa vis-à-vis progress made towards achieving the Africa Water Vision 2025; the Sustainable Development Goals 2030 (SDGs); the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR); and our Africa Agenda 2063.”

The African Union Commission in its statement urged UN Agencies and Partners to ensure that monitoring and reporting processes at global level are aligned and linked with the Pan Africa Water and Sanitation sector Monitoring and Reporting System by working closely with the AMCOW Secretariat. This according to Olayide, is to “avoid unnecessary duplication and placing an unwarranted additional monitoring burden on Member States.”

Francis Konu, representative the African Water Facility (AWF) hailed the continental monitoring and reporting platform established by AMCOW as timely and highly appropriate as “it is in sync with the African Development Bank’s drive to Light up and power Africa, Feed Africa, Integrate Africa, Industrialize Africa, and Improve the quality of life for the people of Africa.”

The web-based Reporting system was developed with funding from the African Water Facility (AWF), and supported by the M&E Task Force, the German Cooperation as well as the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) and with technical assistance from UNEP-DHI.

The highlight of the portal which can be accessed at http://www.africawat-sanreports.org is the 2016 Status Report of 42 African member states submitted using an online reporting framework. It also contains the 2013 and 2014 data submitted by Member States using a temporary paper based template. The system which serves as database on water and sanitation for Member States in Africa is expected to promote cross-sector learning and knowledge dissemination within the water, sanitation, food, energy and climate nexus while supporting joint sector reviews.

The online portal comes with maps and tabular view options which makes it easy to compare progress on various indicators across Member States in Africa.

 
African Water Ministers adopt Durban Declaration for accelerating SDGs implementation PDF Print E-mail

Arising from the 2017 World Water Day Celebrations and the Global Launch of the UN World Water Development Report 2017 entitled: “Wastewater: The Untapped Resource" which ended yesterday in Durban, the Republic of South Africa, water and sanitation ministers from across Africa have adopted the Durban Political Declaration for accelerating the implementation of the sustainable development goals (SDGs).

The adoption of the political declaration which coincided with the announcement of the “Call for Action” towards the implementation of the SDGs with particular emphasis on Goal-6 (Water and Sanitation) was graced by members of the High Level Panel on Water (HLPW), leaders of the African Ministers’ Council on Water (AMCOW), Inter-sectoral Ministers, UNESCO Special Envoy for Water in Africa, UN Agencies, private sector and civil society leaders.

The Durban Political Declaration agreed by all Political leaders mirrors the key principles, pillars and vision of the African Union, AMCOW, and HLPW Action Plan in support of the implementation of the SDGs. The Political Declaration seeks to encourage the acceleration plans and programmes and commit to the rollout of the Action Plan initiative.

In this latest declaration which recalled the African Union Heads of State and Government decision on the implementation of the July 2008 Assembly Declaration on the Sharm El Sheikh Commitments for Accelerating the Achievement of Water and Sanitation Goals in Africa; the eThekwini Declaration on Sanitation and its accompanying actions adopted in South Africa in February 2008; as well as the recent Dar Es Salaam Roadmap for Achieving the N’gor Commitments on Water Security and Sanitation in Africa adopted in Dar Es Salaam, United Republic of Tanzania 26th July 2016, water, sanitation and inter-sectoral ministers from the five Africa sub-regions resolved and committed themselves to supporting and strengthening the implementation of SDG-6 and related goals by ensuring coherence in the implementation of our policies in line with the HLPW Action Plan.

The ministers also declared their commitment to supporting and sharing the best Practice Models initiatives championed by regional leaders who serve as members of the High Level Panel on Water, notably Presidents of Senegal, South Africa and Mauritius. This, according to the declaration, is in line with the Africa Water Vision 2025 which envisages “an Africa where there is an equitable and sustainable use and management of water resources for poverty alleviation, socio-economic development, regional cooperation, and the environment”.

Recalling the aspirations and commitments espoused in Africa’s Agenda 2063 which envisions the optimal use of Africa’s resources towards ensuring positive socio-economic transformation; the 2004 Sirte Declaration on integrated development of Agriculture and Water in Africa; and the 2008 Tunis Declaration on Accelerating Water Security for Africa’s Socio-Economic Development; the High Level Political Declaration commits African governments to increasing budgetary allocation to match the central role of water security and sanitation in Agenda 2030 and in line with the Sharm El Sheikh declaration.

To drive this, the ministers urged the African Ministers’ Council on Water (AMCOW, African Development Bank (AfDB) and African Union Commission (AUC) in collaboration with development partners, to convene meetings of Ministers responsible for Water, and Finance to develop and implement appropriate financing policies and models for water and sanitation.

The declaration further requests the African Heads of States and Government through the AUC to prioritize Water and Sanitation as essential ingredients to Africa’s Economic Development and Growth. On this note, the ministers advocated the designation of AMCOW as the Technical Advisory Committee within AU Specialized Technical Committee on Agriculture, Rural Development, Water and Environment to champion the implementation and monitoring of SDG-6 at the political level.

African ministers and members of the High Level Panel on Water welcomed AMCOW’s launch of the Pan-African web-based monitoring and reporting system for water and sanitation sector which is linked to the global monitoring processes and called for efforts to strengthen and institutionalize harmonised monitoring and reporting system at member states, sub-regional, and basin levels to report on actions taken to implement these High Level Declarations including Political Declaration commitments.

 

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