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National Committee of IHP Holds Consultative Meeting on New Member induction

Feb 20, 2020, 1:19 PM | Article By: Sulayman Waan

Department of Water Resources in partnership with The Gambia National Commission for UNESCO,  Monday organized a day-long consultative workshop for the Intergovernmental Hydrological Programme (IHP) committee; held at National Nutrition Agency (NaNA) in Bakau.

This IHP committee comprises representatives of several ministries, departments, local government authorities, nongovernmental organizations and community based organizations, among others.

The consultative conference was meant to induct the new members to the duties and responsibilities of the committee to ensure its revival.

Officials say the committee could also network with close to 168 Intergovernmental Hydrological Programme National Committees worldwide and has comparative advantage in view of its composition.

Dr. Bamba Banja, permanent secretary at the ministry of Fisheries, Water Resources and National Assembly Matters said re- activating the IHP will contribute significantly towards the sustainable management of Gambia’s water and related resources for sustainable development, hence driving the attainment of sustainable development gold.

“The Gambia Government being cognizant of this fact had developed the integrated water resource management roadmap in 2009.  Recommendations of the roadmap were implemented through the national water sector projects from 2011-15, which occasioned water sector institutional reform with the new draft water bill in 2014,” he said.

 He added that the  bill will establish the National Water Commission, National Water Resource Management Authority (NWRMA), The Gambia Metrological Agency and Department of Rural Water Supply as well as Sanitation under the ministry of Fisheries and Water Resources.

Dr Banja noted that the water resources assessment and management strategy as one of the main output of the national water sector reform project was initiated as result of the bill.

He said the national committee has a major stake in the current water sector reform in the country while assuring that his ministry will work with all relevant stakeholders, particularly the committee to manage its resources.

He o expressed optimism that if the committee works effectively there will be standard in the water resource sector.

The technocrat said water shortage now occurs frequently, saying in order to address that nightmare, there is need for stakeholders to manage the supply and demand chain of water in the country.

“Measure must be put in place to ensure water issued in a sustainable manner,” The expert warned.

Lamin Jarjou, senior programme officer for Gambia National Commission for UNESCO described the committee as significant, saying all UNESCO member states are required to have such commission.

Mr. Jarjou said the IHP committee offers stimulation, encourage hydrological research and assist member states in hydrological research and training activities.

“We have to understand that it brings innovation into disciplinary and environmental sound methods and tools into play while fostering and capitalizing on advances in water science,” he said.