GWP Promotes IWRM, “Water Integrity” in West Africa
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The Global Water Partnership, with national and regional partners, has supported a series of workshops and study activities to promote integrated water resource management in West Africa.

Activities included a validation workshop with national actors on a study on the status of integrated water resource management in West Africa, and training and assessment on “water integrity” – an approach to ethical practice and anti-corruption measures in water management.

7 February 2019: The Global Water Partnership (GWP) has undertaken a series of workshops and study activities to promote integrated water resource management (IWRM) in the West African region, working with national and regional partners. Among the activities supported by GWP are a validation workshop with national actors on a study on the status of IWRM in West Africa, and training and assessment on “water integrity” – an approach to ethical practice and anti-corruption measures in water management.

These activities contribute to implementation of SDG target 6.5, which calls for IWRM at all levels by 2030, including through transboundary cooperation, as appropriate.

From 17-19 December, member States of the West African Economic Monetary Union (WAEMU), including Benin, Burkina Faso, Cote d’Ivoire, Mali, Senegal, and Togo, took part in a workshop in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, to review the results of a GWP study on the status of IWRM in West Africa. Other partners in the workshop were the Volta Basin Authority and Pro-Poor Rewards for Environmental Services in Africa (PRESA). Countries validated the GWP study, and agreed on an action plan to advance the practice of IWRM in the region. [GWP Press Release on IWRM Workshop for WAEMU Countries]

In Mali, the Malian Association of Municipalities met with the Mali Country Water Partnership, the national entity allied with GWP, on 27 December 2018. Participants discussed the application of IWRM to address issues including the impacts of climate change and human activities such as gold panning on water resources. They identified the main institutions relevant to IWRM in Mali, and were briefed on actions that have been taken towards achieving SDG 6 (clean water and sanitation).

The following day, 28 December, the Mali Country Water Partnership held discussions with the Mali National Directorate of Agriculture. The discussions highlighted lack of capacity as a challenge to be addressed through an appropriate capacity-building programme and the appointment of office focal points to coordinate action on basin issues.

Further meetings took place in Mali in January 2019 with the Environment and Sustainable Development Agency (AEDD), the Niger River Basin Agency, and the Mali National Assembly’s parliamentary commission on environment. Participants recommended: enforcing regulations on water pollution; operationalizing a Water Fund to support IWRM activities; and monitoring actions towards SDG 6, as well on the other SDGs. They proposed integrating IWRM in policy documents and programmes, reviewing the current mining code, banning mining activities in watercourses and tributaries, and allocating at least 5% of the national budget to achieving sanitation and water for all. [GWP Press Release on IWRM Activities in Mali]

In Benin, GWP’s Country Water Partnership held four workshops in December 2018 and January 2019, and is working with the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) on a water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) programme in the Mekrou basin. GWP organized two training workshops for peri-urban actors from the Pendjari (the Volta) and Mekrou (the Niger) sub-basins to promote IWRM.

Additionally, GWP is working with the Water Integrity Network (WIN) to promote ethical practice in water resource management, based on the Charter of Good Governance in the Water Sector. The Dutch cooperation agency SNV, WIN and GWP in Benin have conducted a study of governance in the water and sanitation sectors, which identifies good practices at the municipal level. [GWP Press Release on IWRM Activities in Benin] [GWP Press Release on Water Governance Activities in Benin]

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