The 5th Africa Water Week was convened by the African Ministers Council on Water (AMCOW) and took place from 26 – 31 May 2014 in Dakar, Senegal.
The event provided a platform for Africa to reflect on progress made to date towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and further served as an opportune forum for Africa to advocate for a distinct water goal in the post 2015 Development Framework. The underlying vision guiding dialogue at the event was the Africa Water Vision 2025 which aims to achieve “An Africa where there is an equitable and sustainable use and management of water resources for poverty alleviation, socio-economic development, regional cooperation and environment”.
In her opening speech, Her Excellency, Rhoda P Tumusiime, Commissioner for Rural Economy and Agriculture at the Africa Union, highlighted the earnest appeal of the African Water Community for the inclusion of a distinct goal on Water in the post 2015 Sustainable Development Goals. This, she emphasised is based on the fact that freshwater availability is critical to the productivity of sectors such as agriculture, industry, mining, energy, sanitation and hygiene delivery; all of which contribute to driving Africa’s economy. The outgoing AMCOW President, Hon Sarah Reng Ochekpe reiterated the Commissioner’s sentiments indicating that the 5th Africa Water Week took place at a critical turning point providing a platform for Africa, together with its friends on the global level, to again focus on addressing challenges faced in the water management sector. She urged Africa to marshal the necessary actions to achieve the MDG targets and to proactively think of the new goals and targets that the world should set for itself in moving beyond 2015.
The event was convened under four main sub-themes namely:
- Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene: Partnerships, Innovations and Investments – Post 2015
- Water Resources Management for Sustainable Development
- Wastewater Management and Water Quality
- Water and Disaster Risk Management
Technical sessions were organised for each sub-theme which aim to consolidate recommendations to be presented by AMCOW as Africa’s input towards the post 2015 Development Framework.
Over 1000 delegates attended the event from a range of backgrounds including national and local government, private sector, civil society (including youth and women) and the development community.