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Nigeria reaffirms commitment to transboundary water management

Nigeria has reiterated its commitment to managing transboundary waters for the Niger Basin region’s benefit.

Prof. Joseph Utsev
Minister of Water Resources and Sanitation, Prof. Joseph Utsev

The Minister of Water Resources and Sanitation, Prof. Joseph Utsev, made this pledge on Monday, July 8, 2024, during a regional workshop in Abuja to validate a mission’s results for a pilot demonstration project.

Utsev was represented by Mr Adeyinka Adenopo, Director of Water Resources Planning and Technical Support Services at the ministry.

He noted the project’s focus on innovative technologies, capacity development, and joint monitoring to support Mount Mandara ecosystem governance.

He emphasised the importance of collaborative efforts in managing the Mount Mandara Plateau and Sena Oura/Bouba Ndjida (BSB) ecosystems, shared by Nigeria, Cameroon, and Chad.

He thanked the Global Environment Facility, UN Environment Programme, UN Development Programme and the Niger Basin Authority (NBA) for their ongoing support in enhancing regional water governance.

The minister urged participants to contribute their expertise to refine these reports, enhancing the governance and preservation of the transboundary ecosystems.

He noted the significance of preserving the Mount Mandara Plateau and Sena Oura/Bouba Ndjida ecosystems and the vital role of transboundary cooperation in achieving sustainable management.

Earlier, NBA Executive Secretary Mr Abderahim Bireme, expressed gratitude to the Nigerian government for hosting the workshop and acknowledged the efforts of various stakeholders in organising the event.

Mr Allomasso Tchokponhoué, the Regional Project Coordinator of NB-ITTAS, representing the Executive Secretary, stressed the project’s importance in supporting sustainable management and governance of the Mount Mandara Plateau ecosystems.

He underscored the NBA’s role in promoting international and cross-border cooperation for natural resource management and poverty reduction.

He outlined the project’s goals to enhance knowledge-based management, governance, and conservation of the Niger Basin’s resources and aquifer systems.

Bireme reaffirmed the NBA’s commitment to inclusive development initiatives in the Niger Basin and the preservation of the Mount Mandara Plateau’s biodiversity.

The event was attended by representatives from UNDP, NBA, local authorities, and various socio-professional organisations.

The workshop served as a platform for presenting consultant reports on capacity building, sustainable management, and establishing a joint monitoring mechanism.

It concluded with a call for continued support and dedication to the noble objectives of conserving the Niger Basin’s natural resources.

The Niger Basin Authority defines its purpose as the promotion of cooperation among member countries to ensure integrated development of resources.

The nine member states are Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chad, Côte d’Ivoire, Guinea, Mali and Niger and Nigeria.

By Tosin Kolade

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