By Assan Bah
The Ministry of Fisheries, Water Resources and National Assembly Matters on Thursday, 15th December, 2022 organised a day-long validation workshop to review the sector’s performance for the year 2020/2021, at a local hotel in Bakau.
Delivering his opening remarks, Omar SM Gibba, Permanent Secretary of the aforementioned ministry, said the project is supported by the African Development Bank through the Climate Smart Rural WASH Development Project (CSRWASHDEP) and executed by the Ministry.
He said the validation workshop aims to increase access to safe and sustainable water supply, sanitation, and hygiene in The Gambia and it targets residents of rural pre-urban communities and deprived urban communities with poor waste management practices in an environment facing increasing climate change threats of flash flooding and periods of extreme drought.
PS Gibba said: “The Project is designed to deliver the objectives through an Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) approach. The IWRM approach entails coordinated stakeholder interventions to improve the quality of economic and livelihood-driven interaction with nature’s water cycle (the Hydrological Cycle), in a manner that promotes safe, equitable, and sustainable utilisation of the water resources; the approach naturally fosters coordination and active participation of all sector-specific and sector relevant agencies/stakeholders in addition to building their capacity for IWRM.”
He continues to say: “It also requires a coordinated approach to the delivery of services, provision of WASH Infrastructure and improved capacity of stakeholders. Therefore, there is a need to review the sector’s contribution to the overall development of this country.”
He said the sector performance review for 2020/2021 will serve as the baseline for the country and called on partners and the UN system to support the annual reviews to determine yearly sector contribution/performance.
The aim of the Annual Sector Performance Report (ASPR) is to give a baseline report as well as a summary of the WASII sector, progress made in 2020/2021 including the WASH emergency during 2020/2021 as well as a summary of the status and progress in the Water Resource Management (WRM) sector.
“As you may already know, there is an increasing global emphasis on the coordination of actors and activities to meet SDG 6 and 7 for effective and cost-effective delivery of water and sanitation services. The gains that the government will acquire from the coordination and collaboration of actors in water and sanitation are many, but one such benefit is to avoid duplication and increase access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation for all in view of the limited resources available.
“In the same vein, global efforts are also being directed to monitoring and evaluation as well as the performance of water supply and sanitation actors in providing infrastructure and services, data collection,” he added.